Successful Island toy drive for Reach Within

Kimberly Atkins shares donated notebooks with a boy at Father Malligan's Home for Boys.

COURTESY PHOTO | Kimberly Atkins shares donated notebooks with a boy at Father Malligan’s Home for Boys.

Reach Within just arrived back to the U.S. after spending a week in their home away from home in Grenada. Prior to the trip, Reach, together with Shelter Island School, organized a quick yet successful drive for toys, clothing, books and other material items for abused, maltreated and neglected children in Grenada. The Reach team brought a total of four large duffle bags filled to the brim with all the donations and distributed everything during their visit.

2014 is an exciting year for Reach as it begins to develop and expand its programs in the areas of prevention of child abuse, curriculum development and training, research and educational outreach. Reach will begin to partner with a local NGO, Roving Caregivers, focusing on preventing child abuse through offering mobile support and care to children and parents within at risk family homes as well as to participate in Grenada’s designated Child Abuse Awareness month in April.

Reach also plans to launch its newly created curriculum for caregivers working with trauma-affected children in various settings as well as partner with the University of Massachusetts and Harvard University to begin several research projects within Grenada.

Reach will also host a conference together with St. George’s University and WINDREF on June 26 and 27 in Grenada, focused on providing theory based and practical understanding on the importance of developing healthy relationships between children and their caregivers.

In an effort to extend the measurable progress of Grenada’s initiatives to other nations in the Caribbean basin, Reach also plans to hit the ground running with several fundraising efforts this year, including participation in the Island’s 10K race this summer and New York City’s ING Marathon this fall. For both events, Reach recruits a team of dedicated runners who commit to achieving a fundraising goal prior to the event with one hundred percent of the proceeds going to its programs in Grenada and St. Vincent.

Reach thanks everyone from the Shelter Island community for its generous donations and supporting its efforts in the Caribbean and will continue to accept new or used clothing, toys, books, and other donations on an ongoing basis. If interested in donating items, please contact Kimberly Atkins on the Island at (631) 903-4654. For more information on Reach’s programs and fundraising opportunities please visit our website at