We're a Proud Sponsor of Kids' Chance of Nevada and Kids' Chance of America
EMPLOYERS Cares, and Social Media Manager, Adam Varahachaikol, highlights why we are a proud sponsor of Kids’ Chance of Nevada and Kids’ Chance of America:
Kids’ Chance is non-profit organization with chapters located throughout most of the United States. Their vision is to provide children affected by a parent’s work-related injury or death an opportunity to pursue their educational dreams without financial burden.
“Kids Chance is all about providing children of severely injured or deceased workers post-secondary scholarships to give them the opportunity to get an education and to change the lives of families affected by these severe injuries,” said John Goldwater, President of Kids' Chance of Virginia and a Past President of Kids' Chance of America.
Children of these injured or deceased workers can no longer count on income from an injured or deceased parent. Along with the grief of loss, or needing to help care for the injured parent, these kids are also unlikely to be able to afford a college education.
“So many of these families having gone through these traumatic events don’t have the financial resources to provide for children who are coming up along the way," Goldwater said. "When the event occurs, it’s traumatic. 10-15 years later when young children are coming up through this, we provide the ability for those children to get an education and to change the lives for their families and themselves.”
We were introduced to Ali Kurnath, a 2015 scholarship recipient through Kids’ Chance of New Jersey. She was a speaker at the 2018 National Workers’ Compensation and Disability Conference and Expo in Las Vegas.
“I’ll never forget sitting in the library, studying for my very first round of finals at High Point University when I received a phone call from my mom,” Ali said during her speech.
During Ali’s freshman year of college, her father was in a car accident during a business trip that resulted in a spinal cord injury.
At the conference, Ali talked about how her dad has always been her biggest role model.
“He always pushed us to be the best at anything we put our minds to, even if that drove us crazy most of the time.”
She then said after her father’s life-altering injury, he pushed himself with the support of his family.
“It became our turn to become our dad’s biggest supporters and to motivate him every day to push himself, even if it drove him crazy most of the time as well.”
When Ali received the Kids’ Chance of New Jersey Scholarship, she said it took a great financial burden off of her mom so that she could focus on the care that her father needed during his recovery.
“Kids Chance actually made it possible for me to return back to High Point (University) for my sophomore year to pursue and graduate with a degree in human relations. Without Kids’ Chance, I absolutely would not have been able to return to school with all the medical bills that had added up that were now on my mom’s shoulders.”
Ali wanted to give back, and did so by getting involved with Kids Chance of North Carolina as a marketing intern. Now, she lives in New York, works for a Human Resources software company and continues to showcase why Kids’ Chance is such a vital program for families affected by an on-the-job accident.
There are many others across the nation who see Kids’ Chance as a great way to give back, including Rona Finkelstein, Board Member of both Kids’ Chance of Maryland and Kids’ Chance of America.
“It’s a very important charity for me because I lost my mother at age 16, not from a workplace injury, but the effect on, the impact on the family by having the death of a parent, and it was very difficult for me to get through school," she said. "I had to do it on my own, work full-time, and go to school full-time. I would not want any other child to do that, and I’m grateful to be part of Kids Chance of Maryland, and Kids Chance of America because I know the important work that we do to get more money for more kids.”
Kids’ Chance of America says their biggest challenge is not funding, but actually finding more eligible kids to give scholarships to.
"My experience with Kids Chance over the past 12 years has been perhaps we’re reaching 3-5% of all children affected," Goldwater said. "So, getting the word out, broadening the Kids Chance community is very, very important in terms of being able to find more children.”
You can help by going to KidsChance.org, click on the “Planning For The Future” tab and bookmark it so that every time you meet an eligible applicant, you can connect them to Kids’ Chance, no matter how young they are.
You can also learn more about Kids’ Chance of Nevada by going to KidsChanceofNevada.org, or find your local Kids’ Chance chapter, by heading to KidsChance.org, click on the “State Organizations” tab, and click on “Find Your Kids’ Chance.”