Five Acres Sounds the Alarm: More Foster Families Needed

Jillian and Scott Shriner adopted their younger son through the child- and family-services nonprofit Five Acres, which advocates for foster children to find a permanent home.
Photo courtesy Five Acres
Jillian and Scott Shriner adopted their younger son through the child- and family-services nonprofit Five Acres, which advocates for foster children to find a permanent home.

With the holiday season quickly approaching, people far and wide have begun to gather energies, recipes and vacation days to unite with family, immediate or extended, or take part in a “Friendsgiving” celebration.
But for Annie and her wife, Gail, the holidays are especially poignant: Surrounded by their four young children brimming with energy, love and chatter, the mothers are reminded how they built their family in the nontraditional way, by fostering to adopt through Five Acres, a child- and family-services agency based in Altadena.
Annie reminisces about how each child came into the family fold. Some were easier to adopt than others, while some of the adoptions were filled with nausea and nerves and sleepless nights ahead of court battles.
“I compare the adoption process to me giving birth — as painful as it could be, as soon as it was over and they were ours I was ready to do it all over again,” said Annie, who requested that her last name be withheld to protect her children. Continue reading “Five Acres Sounds the Alarm: More Foster Families Needed”

Poetry Workshop Enriches Five Acres Youth

Matt Lillard and Five Acres CEO Chanel Boutakidis
Matt Lillard and Five Acres CEO Chanel Boutakidis

5JammaSlamma, the foster youth slam poetry workshop hosted by actor Matt Lillard (“Scooby Doo,” “Good Girls”) enjoyed a great turnout at its second annual celebration recently. Accompanied by Hawaii’s poet laureate Kealoha and other notable artists, foster youth from Five Acres performed original works of poetry before 150 guests at Werkartz in downtown Los Angeles.
5JammaSlamma began in 2017 as Lillard’s weeklong workshop to teach foster youth the power of creative writing, bringing in poets and musicians to work with the children. With the support of Engaging the Senses and Say Word, the workshop expanded to a six-month program and will continue to serve children living in residential foster care at Five Acres, one of L.A.’s oldest child and family services nonprofits.
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Five Acres to Throw 130th Birthday Bash June 2

Photo courtesy Five Acres Kirsten Hansen and Matt McIntyre are serving as co-chairs of Five Acres’ 130th Birthday Bash.
Photo courtesy Five Acres
Kirsten Hansen and Matt McIntyre are serving as co-chairs of Five Acres’ 130th Birthday Bash.

Five Acres, one of San Gabriel Valley’s oldest nonprofit organizations, will host its Diamonds & Roses Gala: Five Acres’ 130th Birthday Bash on Saturday evening, June 2, at the home of Mariann and Tom Nolan in La Cañada Flintridge.
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Five Acres Raises Funds for ‘Permanency’

Ryan Dietz is the past Five Acres board chair and founding member of the Five Acres Permanency Tile Campaign.
Ryan Dietz is the past Five Acres board chair and founding member of the Five Acres Permanency Tile Campaign.

Five Acres has launched a fundraising campaign as part of a four-year strategic plan to connect Los Angeles’ 20,000 foster youth with permanent families by the year 2020. Titled “Pathway to Permanency,” the campaign will help fund Five Acres’ permanency efforts and will be represented with 200 inscribed wall tiles installed at the nonprofit’s main campus in Altadena.
The tile campaign comes at a time when the foster care crisis in Los Angeles is reaching its tipping point, with more children entering the foster system than there are families to take them in.
Continue reading “Five Acres Raises Funds for ‘Permanency’”