The Alex Foster Foundation’s HopeFULL Backpack Program recently donated filled backpacks to CASPAR (Cambridge and Somerville Program for Alcoholism and Drug Abuse Rehabilitation). The bags will support young people struggling with addiction or mental illness as they seek assistance and treatment by providing them with items that most of us take for granted. The backpacks were filled with many daily living essentials such as toiletries, white socks, a knit hat, fleece scarf and blanket, rain poncho, and resource information to locate treatment centers, shelters, drop-in centers, etc. Also included were a notebook, pens, stamps, and envelopes, which can be used for correspondence. Many of the bags were immediately placed in CASPAR’s Street Outreach van. The shelter, located on the campus of MIT serves adult men and women and is one of only two in the state that accepts clients who are currently using drugs. This is often their first step toward recovery, as they are encouraged to transition into one of CASPAR’s treatment and/or housing programs.
The Alex Foster Foundation was formed following Alex’s death due to addiction at the age of 28 in 2014. The Foundation’s goal is to educate and raise awareness about addiction, as well as support those who struggle with addiction and their loved ones. Since its’ formation less than 2 years ago, AFF has also supported The Somerville Homeless Coalition and Teen Empowerment and is currently making plans to host a monthly support group for anyone who has lost a loved one to addiction through the national organization GRASP (Grief Recovery After a Substance Passing). If you would like to get involved with AFF or make a donation, please visit http://www.aff-soar.org or like us on Facebook, alexfosterfoundation. You can also send us an e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org
(The first picture shows backpacks filled, and ready to go. The second picture shows, left to right: Diana Young, Emily Foster, Megan Costa, and Maureen Foster).