Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Bringing Hope for the Holidays

For years now, individuals, companies and organizations across Arizona have been collecting "Gifts of Hope" for the holidays for families we serve who have nowhere else to turn. Arizona’s Children staff from all over the state had much to say about your generous impact on our families this year:

“Our location was very blessed and we were able to help over 200 families provide a happy holiday season for their kids!”
- Amy Jordan, Sr. Family Support Specialist, Chandler

“One mother was under a lot of stress due to her husband’s illness and living on a fixed income… She did not ask for any help but I called her and asked her what size her child was. We just so happened to have some blue jeans that were just her size…I brought her the blue jeans, a board game and a gift card that had been donated so that the she could go out and get the child something special from her. She was so thankful for this help.”
- Foster Care Licensing Specialist, Lake Havasu

“Charlie was extremely appreciative and excited about his gifts. When he first saw the presents, his mouth immediately dropped open, saying “this is all for me?” Then he started opening the gifts, with tears in his eyes, saying “I can’t believe it … I’ve never gotten any real Christmas presents, ever in my life, nothing like this, ever…” …He was even excited about the socks and underwear. It was very touching and made me tear up a little too because I’ve seen so many youth open gifts over the years but never one this happy and touched by getting gifts- it was inspiring.”
- Jen Workman, Youth Advocate, Phoenix

"Surprise employees created a campaign to raise the funds needed to provide gifts to children from 50 families in need. Working together with local businesses, families from the community donated clothes, gifts, and toys… The last week of December was filled with joy in the Surprise office, as toys and clothing were delivered to over 100 families in need.”
- Maureen Fennell, Clinician II, Surprise

“…[Our program] was able to get 42 families adopted. Children received everything from bikes, to clothes, to Legos and stuffed animals… We were able to ensure that all of the families who were in need got something. It truly was a great team effort and it was nice that so many families got the help they needed.”
-Jacquie Moreno, CFT Team Lead/Supervisor, Tucson

“We had a really great time collecting presents and donations, and an even better time delivering them to our kiddo’s parents! One mom said to me, ‘Thank you guys so much!!! We would not have had a Christmas without you!’ Needless to say it was very heartwarming!! Can’t wait to do it again next year!”
- Sarah Jaquith, STAR Program Coordinator, Flagstaff

“Once Upon a Thyme Catering provided a 4 course dinner for 350 people at our foster care holiday party! This 100% donation includes all the food and preparation of the food as well as numerous volunteers to set up and serve. When they first offered, I estimated 225 people. Our RSVPs kept coming and coming and they very graciously agreed to do 350 people! They are amazing and we are so thankful!
-Virginia Watahomigie, Program Director, Tucson

There are many stories like these from all over the state. We appreciate the genuine generosity and joy of giving of all of our Gifts of Hope donors and foster care holiday party supporters across the state. Below is a list of corporate donors. Our individual donors are too many to mention here but we are truly appreciative of all that you do for us!

Western Arizona
Lowes, Home Depot, Mohave Community College, State Farm, All Kinds of Delicious, Horizon Community Bank, Associated Desert Shoppers, London Bridge Plaza,Inc. Alexander Ford Automotive Group,
Calvary Temple of Christ, JV farms, Yuma Adult Probation, Yuma Area Sector Border Patrol, Dr. Ochoa’s office, Hospice of Yuma, Garden Café, Yuma Union High School, San Luis High School, Dr. Aiello’s office, Southwestern Eye, Yuma Proving Ground, Sentinels, Border Health, Cornerstone Preschool, Public Defenders, Billie Jean Investment Company

Southern Arizona
National Association of Tax Professionals, Rainbird, Bank of the West, Tucson Electric Power, State Farm, Department of Ontology, Pima County Procurement Department, Tucson Country Day School, Tucson Police Department – Budget Department, UA Health Plans, Hungry Fox Café, St. Pius X Catholic Church, Reid Park Zoo, Once Upon a Thyme Catering

Northern Arizona
High Country Area – BTW, A1 Office Supply, Yavapai Indian Tribe, Captain Crossfit, Bend Hot Yoga, Red Arrow Realty, Fusion of Movement, Prescott Hot Rodders Club, Sheldon Street Walgreens, Style Suites, Arizona State Savings and Credit Union, Cracker Barrel, Marines Toys for Tots, Lions Club, Sue Ann’s Apple Pan

Central Arizona
Celebrity Skin, Federal Reserve Bank of SF, Merry Maids, Stanley Consultants Group, Arizona Supreme Court, Valley Partnership, One Source Freight, CBS Outdoor, Manheim Group, Aldea, Atlasta Catering Concepts, Babbo Italian Eatery, Mi Catering, Fleur de Lis Unforgettable Cakes, Tiffany's Cakes and More, Phoenix Photobooths, Bill Dooling Photography, Petals & Lucy, Push Play Entertainment, Orchard Medical Group, Surprise Angel’s Gymnastics, Top Shelf Mexican Cantina, Office Max, Global Supply Chain/First Solar, Inc., American Family Insurance, Sun America Mortgage, National Association of Tax Professionals, Vantage West Credit Union

An additional thank you to Arizona’s Children Association employees statewide who donated to Gifts of Hope!

If you are interested in participating in collection drives to collect the many items we need throughout the year, please visit If you are interested in Gifts of Hope 2013, please email Chris at to request an informational letter about this event later in the year.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Arizona’s Children Association announces new President and CEO Denise Ensdorff

Ingrid Novodvorsky, chair of the Board of Directors of Arizona's Children Association (AzCA) is pleased to announce the selection of Denise Ensdorff as the agency’s next President and Chief Executive Officer. Denise accepted the role of Interim President and CEO, previously held by Michael Coughlin, on October 1, 2012. In December, the Board voted to place Denise in the role of President and CEO.

Denise most recently served as Arizona’s Children Association’s Senior Vice President and Director of Behavioral Health programs. She has worked for Arizona’s Children Association since 2007.

Denise Ensdorff has been in the field of behavioral health since 1985. Prior to her tenure with Arizona’s Children Association, she lived in Colorado where she worked in a residential and day treatment center for children, as well as with an Employee Assistance Program.

“Few agencies in Arizona have such a vast and remarkable history as Arizona’s Children Association and we believe that Denise Ensdorff is the best fit to lead us into the next century of providing services,” stated Ingrid Novodvorsky. “Denise is a long-time AzCA staff member who brings enthusiasm, skill, and dedication to her position and we are confident about the future of the agency with the leadership of Denise and the executive management team that we have in place.”