HOPE IN THE GARDEN
Benefits the Nonprofit Kids in Focus

Beginning on March 18 through March 28, Berridge Nurseries hosted a photography exhibit organized in collaboration with nonprofit organization Kids in Focus. At the opening celebration, Gerald Wissink, CEO of BHHS Legacy Foundation, presented a gift of $84,500. The funds will be used to support the Kids in Focus mentoring project.

Above, left to right: Mike Oleskow, Kids in Focus board chair; Karen Shell, Kids in Focus founder; and Tom Waite, Kids in Focus board member.

Set in the open-air spaces of the nursery, the Hope in the Garden exhibit was a collection of 50 images by 50 current and graduated program participants. These vulnerable children spent nine weeks with their volunteer mentors exploring nature, building trusting relationships and gaining valuable life skills along the way.

The photos that were on display featured beautiful botanicals and outdoor scenes and represent the culmination of each youngster’s journey of self-discovery. The photos were available for purchase at the nursery, with all proceeds benefitting Kids in Focus. The image could be ordered on canvas or metal and was mailed to the buyer within two weeks of the purchase.

Above: Examples of the kids’ artwork who spent nine weeks with volunteer mentors exploring nature, building relationships and gaining valuable life skills along the way.

“Kids in Focus is a tremendous organization, and we were happy to showcase the talent and creativity of these young photographers,” said Christine Fortman, co-owner of Berridge.

Kids in Focus uses the restorative power of photography and the guidance of dedicated mentors to help youth open their eyes to their own potential as they build the resilience they need to overcome challenges. Images have been exhibited at venues such at the Arizona Science Center, Children’s Museum of Phoenix, Sky Harbor Airport and the Arizona State Capitol. Children are paired with a mentor that can help them not only with their photography, but support them in any other issues they may be facing.

Above and left: Working with mentors, 50 kids created 50 images for Hope in the Garden.

“Coming from an abusive home growing up, I experienced the need for outside support, and knew I wanted to help kids that were going through the same things I did,” says Karen Shell, executive director of Kids in Focus. “We are grateful to Berridge Nurseries for allowing us to showcase photos at their nursery, it is such a beautiful location, and will be a really special experience for our kids.”

For more information, visit https://kidsinfocus.org

ABOUT LEGACY FOUNDATION

Legacy Connection and BHHS Legacy Foundation, both 501(c)(3) tax-exempt nonprofits, have a shared mission and vision to maintain their history of healthcare service by helping community organizations improve the health and quality of life of citizens in need. To date, both the Foundation and Legacy Connection have invested more than $75 million to highly effective nonprofit projects, programs, and organizations that provide care and services to the underserved in the community. Both Legacy Foundation and Legacy Connection work in the Greater Phoenix area and the northern Tri-State region to bring about long-lasting improvements to the safety and success of children, families, and seniors, as well as the communities where they live. For more deatails, visit https://bhhslegacy.org