Guests heard first-hand stories of how FSL’s programs have changed the lives of clients and their caregivers
PHOENIX, Ariz. (March 30, 2023) – Recently, more than 300 supporters joined FSL for a celebration of independence as the Hope in Motion event returned after a three-year hiatus, raising over $80,000 to support the resources and programming that the organization provides for clients and their caregivers.
The event, which took place in a breakfast and lunch session, was designed to give guests a first-hand look into the lives of clients and learn how FSL’s programming and resources were able to help them gain, maintain, and enhance their independence.
Emcees Andrea Evans and Whitney Clark welcomed attendees with an overview of the organization before turning the spotlight to FSL leadership and clients, including Ariel White, an FSL affordable housing resident and local artist.
White shared her story with the audience – Her marriage of 20 years was rocked when her husband was diagnosed with brain cancer and passed seven months later, their successful cabinet business was lost when Heber experienced one of the largest forest fires in state history, and when White moved to Phoenix to rebuild, a mystery illness took away her ability to work. Eventually, she lost her home and while she was experiencing homelessness, she lost her son to suicide.
“This was the hardest time of my entire life. And I honestly couldn’t see a way out,” White said. “Then I got the call from FSL saying I had been accepted into their affordable housing apartments. Everything changed.”
White went on to encourage attendees to support FSL programming so others can find the support and compassion she received.
“In all of my story, this is the most unreal part of it: that there are people like the team at FSL willing to invest their time and money to provide a place for people to flourish. For that, I am eternally grateful,” she said. “FSL gave me the gift of a home, of safety, of dignity, and most importantly, of hope.”
The event also addressed the “Silver Tsunami,” a time when older adults are expected to outnumber the under 18 population in the United States and one that will lead to an increased demand for services and affordable housing.
“As we look towards the future, we are facing a crisis that is looming larger and larger with each passing day. I want to make sure FSL is part of the solution,” Tami Bohannon, president and CEO of FSL, said during the event. “By 2035, for the first time in US history, older adults are expected to outnumber children under the age of 18. That means that in just over a decade, we will be caring for a population of older adults that is larger than any we have ever seen before. And the truth is, our current systems are simply not equipped to handle the demands that this will place on us.”
Bohannon said that the organization is already seeing the impossible choices older adults are having to make between maintaining homes or finding access to care, putting food on the table or affording life-saving medications.
“All too often, they are being left to face these challenges alone,” she said, noting FSL’s commitment to providing solutions that create a caring community and promotes health and well-being for all that has lasted nearly 50 years. Learn more about FSL’s programs and how to get involved by visiting fsl.org.
FSL is a 501(c)(3) organization whose mission is to provide home and community-based services and to develop energy-efficient, affordable housing to promote health, independence and dignity for all. With a long history of helping Arizona families with issues including health, hunger, aging, illness, loneliness and substandard housing, FSL is committed to improving the quality of life for all Arizonans. To learn more about FSL programs and services, visit fsl.org.