EverGreene employees recently supported Emily Sottile, Director of the Sacred Spaces Studio, by participating in her 6th year of issuing anonymous "Valentines" to women survivors of domestic abuse living in temporarily living in NYC Safe Horizon shelters.
The Project Valentine goodie bags are filled with little items contributors won't miss that can make a woman who has had to abandon most of her possessions feel she has something special: jewelry, manicure sets, journals, cosmetics, sunglasses, gift cards to drug stores for necessities and monetary donations through PayPal. And, says Emily, they also include prayers and wishes for "safety, strength and success for each special Valentine at the shelters. Prayers that we are able to recognize through opportunities to assist our communities."
In 2018, EverGreene assembled nearly 300 bags, distributed to all eight NYC Safe Horizons Shelters in Brooklyn, Queens, Manhattan, Staten Island and the Bronx. And for the first time Project Valentine expanded to Missouri, where one of our anonymous Valentines brought love to a Saint Louis shelter.
According to Emily, "Lots of people don't like Valentine's day. I imagine being in a shelter would make this day particularly rough. Our goal is to make our Valentines at the shelters know there are people across the country (and maybe in the same subway car) rooting for them and who believe they are deserving of love.”