Vancouver charity bridges gap between foster teens needs

first_imgStevenson High School senior Jenay Walsh is facing some steep, but important, expenses right now: college application fees of approximately $50 per school. She’s applying to four. Her grades have been great lately, and her hopes are high.Last year, due to education budget cuts, Walsh was facing steep fees for school sports: $85 per sport. Plus expenses like equipment and uniforms. Walsh is a basketball and softball star at SHS.None of those costs are chump change to this foster child and her family — a big group that includes several other foster kids, not to mention the birth son of parents Leah and A.J. Smith.In both cases, Walsh talked to her caseworker, and the caseworker talked to Bridge the Gap. That’s a Vancouver-based charity aiming to sweeten the lives of needy foster children with some of the perks most of us take for granted — from Christmas presents to dance lessons, or, in Walsh’s case, from basketball shoes to college application costs.It’s helped Walsh, 18, carve out some normalcy in what’s been anything but a normal life. Without Bridge the Gap, she said, she might be holding foster-youth fundraisers or otherwise hitting up others for help.last_img

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