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Article published March 27, 2014
Gift of fresh air
Brenda McCall Butler
With the arrival of spring, thoughts of summer do not linger far behind. The days grow longer, nature comes alive around us, and summer plans begin to take shape. Summer provides an opportunity for us to share the sights and sounds of our community with others less fortunate. Since 1877, The Fresh Air Fund, an independent, nonprofit agency, has provided free summer vacations to more than 1.7 million disadvantaged New York City children. Through the fund’s Friendly Town Program, young New Yorkers, ages 6 to 18, experience the joy of summer during visits of two weeks or longer with volunteer host families. Fresh Air hosts live in suburban and small town communities throughout 13 Northeastern states and Ontario, Canada. The fund is looking for more volunteer families to provide an inner-city child with a two-week respite from the hot streets and crowded concrete playgrounds. Please consider how you can make a difference in the life of a child this summer by opening your heart and your home. Help us continue the fund’s 138-year-old tradition of serving children. For more information, call Butler chairperson Brenda McCall at 724-283-4656 or The Fresh Air Fund at 800-367-0003; of www.freshair.org online.