Eighteen months ago when Kathleen Duncan from Arizona’s iconic Duncan Family Farms decided she wanted to start giving back to this community that had showered so much pleasure upon her and the Duncan family over the last 25 years, she admittedly did not know where she could help, just that she wanted to help where her contributions could do the most good, and where they were most needed.
After spending an entire day getting a full orientation of all the worthwhile charities with friends Mark and Barb Olszewski, long time Puerto Peñasco residents and hands-on doers of good deeds throughout the community themselves, Kathleen chose to volunteer her time and contributions to Albergue Infantil, Amores de Peñasco, in English, Children’s Shelter, Loves of Peñasco. She had heard about this shelter before, and had experience working with child crisis centers in the U.S.
This small shelter is operated on a lean budget by DIF, the city’s family assistance charity, dedicated to rescuing child victims of abuse, neglect and/or abandonment, many times right off the streets. Once taken into the shelter, they are cleaned up, fed and offered the security of a safe haven while the counselors locate a stable environment for them to move into, sometimes with relatives, or in extreme cases, adoptive homes. We’ll let Kathleen tell you more about this shelter and how her involvement has developed over the last 18 months in her beautifully written newsletter reprinted below that conveys the enthusiastic emotion with which she has dedicated her time, funds, organizational skills, love and compassion for the children and staff of Amores de Peñasco.
Just to steal a bit of the proverbial ‘thunder’ from her newsletter; soon after volunteering at the shelter, besides falling in love with the kids and the staff, as our headline indicates, Kathleen realized the need to categorize and prioritize the needs of Amores de Peñasco beginning with the non-perishable but consumable basic supplies that she narrowed down to what she labeled the “Big 5 Wish List”, which, if all the good people who want to help could bring some of the goods down with them when they visit (they are all available locally as well), would free up funds to put toward the “higher level” needs of the children like remedial education/tutoring and psychological support. The Big 5 Wish List, as you will read below, include diapers (sizes 3,4,5) and wipes; toilet paper; all purpose cleaners (Fabuloso, Pine Sol, etc); Clorox bleach; laundry soap of any brand.
Sonoran Resorts have set up depositories near the sales offices in each of their resorts (Sonoran Sky, Spa, Sea and Sun) where you can drop off any of these items when you come down. You may also leave products at the Rocky Point Times office, the entrance gate to Las Conchas and at the Light House Restaurant. In the U.S. you can leave them on the front porch of the main office of Duncan Family Farms at 18969 W. McDowell Rd. in Buckeye (AZ 85396)
In true Duncan Family Farms fashion, Kathleen’s husband, Arnott, and their son, Sean, have wrapped their arms around the Amores de Peñasco program with the same kindness and enthusiasm as Kathleen. In fact, even the staff of Duncan Family Farms have committed to raise funds for the shelter and have been donating monies from various fund raising events for some time now.
It only takes a glance at these photo collages of Kathleen with the kids at Amores de Peñasco taken on the premises and during one of her regular shopping trips to the Sam’s Club here—a journey highly anticipated by the kids to spend even more time with their “Tia Katy”! The other collage is of Sean having fun with one of the children, a 4 year old found wandering the streets of Peñasco last year. The smiles on both their faces reflect the special bond developed between them. The child has since been relocated to live with his relatives in southern Mexico.
Through Kathleen, we can see the power of love and the contagiousness of enthusiasm. After reading her 2 page informative and compassionate newsletter, we’re sure you’ll want to participate in some way to help Amores de Peñasco….
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This blog is powered by www.sonoranresorts.mx, Jim Ringquist, Director of Sales and Marketing.