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Building the Walls of Love for a Permanent Home for Valerie's House
More than $275,000 was raised through a series of unique opportunities to give at the new temporary home of Valerie's House, which just opened at 1762 Fowler St. in downtown Fort Myers.
"We wanted to do something to help Valerie's House, which helps children who have lost a parent or guardian by providing a safe place for them to express their feelings and restore their sense of well-being,"
Valerie's House has helped 350 children and their families since its founding in 2016 by Angela Melvin, whose own mother was killed in a car accident in 1987. The non-profit organization uses art and music to help children identify, express and process their grief.
During the evening, guests had the opportunity to:
● View masks created by grieving children to express their feelings. The masks are part of their therapy at Valerie's House;
● Sign and/or leave inspirational messages on a canvas called the "Wall of Love" that will hang in the new home of Valerie's House;
● Participate in a raffle for a one-of-a-kind piece of jewelry designed and donated by Mark Loren Designs.
Guests nibbled on appetizers donated by area restaurants and spirits donated by Sandy Stilwell and Southern Wine & Spirits while viewing artwork created by the children of Valerie's House. Food was donated and prepared by the following chefs:Ben Voisin and Fabrice Deletrain of Gather; Todd Johnson of Rumrunners; Bob Boye of Cru; Jay Johnson of Bubba's Roadhouse & Saloon; and Norman Love Confections.
Other sponsors included Friendly Faces, Planned Perfection, and Susan Bennett Marketing & Media, L.C.
For more information about Valerie's House or to register a family for programs, visit www.valerieshouseswfl.org/
About Valerie's House
Valerie's House opened in January 2016 and is serving more than 120 children and their families from Lee, Collier, Charlotte, and Hendry counties. The organization provides a safe, comfortable place for children to share, grieve and heal together following the death of a close family member. Valerie's House has two locations: 1762 Fowler St. in downtown Fort Myers and a satellite location at The Village School in Naples.
Valerie's House support programs are designed to give children ages 4 to 19 years old and their families a safe place to share, grieve and grow. The overall goal is to lovingly assist children and their caregivers on their journeys toward mending broken hearts. Valerie's House is modeled after the nationally-recognized and acclaimed Dougy Center for Grieving Children & Families. Programs include open-ended support groups and activities to help children to heal after a significant loss in their lives.
About Norman Love Confections
Founded in 2001 by Norman and Mary Love, Norman Love Confections creates and distributes handcrafted artisanal chocolates from its corporate headquarters at 11380 Lindbergh Blvd. in Fort Myers, Florida. The award-winning Fort Myers-based chocolatier has been lauded more than a dozen times by a leading consumer ratings magazine, including recognition six times for producing the best ultra-premium chocolates in the nation. Forbes.com included Norman Love Confections BLACK line on its list of the nation's top 10 truffles; The Huffington Post listed it among the six best U.S. destinations in its Chocolate Lover's Travel Guide; and USA Today named Love as one of its top 10 entrepreneurs for 2014. Love has recently been named as the inaugural inductee of Dessert Professional Magazine's Chocolatier Hall of Fame, partnered with local chefs to present a six-course meal at the James Beard House in New York and Norman Love Confections was ranked among the top 10 shops in the world for chocolate lovers by U.K. media outlet Daily Telegraph.
Norman Love Confections has Chocolate Salons in Fort Myers, Estero and Naples, and Artisan Gelato by Norman Love is next door to the Fort Myers salon, off Daniels Parkway east of I-75. Chocolates, gift baskets, sipping chocolate and Love's book, "Artistry in Chocolate, A Story of Love," also can be ordered online at www.normanloveconfections.com. In addition, Norman Love Confections chocolates and desserts are offered on 18 Princess Cruises' ships through the "Chocolate Journeys" partnership and at independent retail locations throughout the U.S. For more information visit www.normanloveconfections.com or call 239-561-7215.
Susan Bennett Marketing & Media, L.C.