Ocean Partnership for Children hosts Friendraising Gathering

The event was held at Garden State Distillery in Toms River on October 25th.
OPC hosts Friendraising Gathering
OPC hosts Friendraising Gathering
TOMS RIVER, N.J. - Oct. 27, 2022 - PRLog -- The room grew silent as Nick's father shared how his son's life was changed forever by Ocean Partnership for Children (OPC). The 20-year-old has special needs, and his family was going through a challenging time. OPC stepped in and provided them with the in-home supports necessary to move on to the next chapter as Nick prepares to graduate into the adult system of care at age 21.

"We were surrounded by an army," said Nick's dad. "OPC came up with a care plan and a steady path to follow. They accepted us as we were and didn't try to change us. The types of support we have now is incredible. Nick is happy. I wish I would have known about OPC sooner."

Nick's story pulled on heartstrings all around, and it became clear that Ocean Partnership for Children had a profound message to share.

"Nick is one of 1,000 children that we serve here in Ocean County who are struggling with mental health, substance use disorder, intellectual and/developmental challenges," said Mary Jo Buchanan, Executive Director of OPC. "It's because of Nick's story and so many others that we are on a mission to make sure that every single person, family, individual and youth knows who we are, what we do and how to get to us."

This was the goal of OPC's first ever Friendraising Gathering, held on October 25th at Garden State Distillery in Toms River – across the street from OPC's headquarters. The small batch distillery graciously opened its doors for the nonprofit on a day when it would normally be closed to offer high quality spirts to guests. Food was generously provided by A Thyme For All Seasons Café & Catering. Various board members and friends of OPC attended the event. Assemblyman John Catalano was also in attendance.

"This is the first time that we are gathering to share our mission," said Buchanan. "We thank you for helping us spread the word and hope that you will share OPC's mission with passion and knowledge."

OPC links youth and families to all the resources and supports they need, and they currently have over 80 care managers that work within the organization and throughout the community.

"As Ocean County's Care Management Organization, we are part of the New Jersey Children's System of Care and are responsible for linking youth in crisis to resources to help them heal and succeed," Buchanan added.

About Ocean Partnership for Children Inc.

Founded in 2005, Ocean Partnership for Children (OPC) is Ocean County's Care
Management Organization (CMO). Its mission is to enhance the well-being of youth and
their families through natural and community supports. OPC provides care management
services for Ocean County youth up to the age of 21 years who have mental health,
substance use, intellectual and developmental challenges.  OPC strives to keep children and adolescents at home, in school, and in the community by connecting
them to resources that meet their unique needs and help them achieve their goals.

Ocean Partnership for Children is a non-profit organization available at no cost
to all youth and families in Ocean County who meet the eligibility criteria
of the New Jersey Children's System of Care. To learn more, visit www.oceanpartnership.org or https://www.oceanresourcenet.org.

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