For the past 27 years, Rainbow Days has hosted a one-of-a-kind back to school festival. The event gives hundreds of homeless kids in Dallas the opportunity to have fun and just be a kid!
“We’re trying to give them a fun, family outing,” said Tiffany Beaudine, Development Director at Rainbow Days. “It’s a chance to be a kid in a safe environment.”
Rainbow Days works year-round with children who live in motels, homeless and domestic violence shelters, and other transitional living sites. The organization provides support for children living in these stressful situations, by teaching them how to manage their feelings without using drugs or alcohol. In Texas, nearly 47% of homeless youth have experienced alcohol abuse or addiction. Beaudine says, “the back to school event is one example of how Rainbow Days demonstrates drug-free fun.”
“One of the things we talk about is that it’s OK, and it’s important to have drug-free fun,” said Beaudine. “This is having fun, without using any substances, and being in a safe place with safe people who care about me. Those are all really important messages that alleviate the stress they are experiencing.”
United Way has been a proud supporter of Rainbow Days and its alcohol and drug prevention programs for almost two decades.
At the back to school event, not only did students enjoy a few hours of games and good food, they also walked away with new clothing, supplies, and backpacks to start the school year. Lakisha Miller, a single mother of two, is thankful this event exists.
“This means a lot to me. I didn’t get backpacks this year, because I had other things going on, so I am very happy about this,” she said.
When you give to United Way, you’re not only helping kids at Rainbow Days rise above adversity, but you’re also helping to treat 360 degrees of need throughout North Texas in the areas of education, income and health—the essential components of a thriving community.