Among the relationships we’ve developed with a wonderful group of non-profit organizations, Wesley House Family Services is special because it’s local. Adoption and foster care are privatized in Florida, and Wesley House is the only local organization that facilitates those services.
Wesley House is a nationally accredited not-for-profit organization dedicated to protecting and nurturing children, and strengthening families with services spanning Monroe County, Florida. It does this by promoting and enhancing the safety, well-being and development of children by educating, supporting and meeting the needs of families.
Their commitment to the Florida community, and specifically the Keys, mirrors that of the Jose Wejebe Foundation.
Jose’s home base was always the Florida Keys and as a guide he did it all. Offshore, inshore, fly, spin – he was one of the best at all of them. There were very few guides that could and would do that. So, before he started to venture out of the Keys, his focus was all things fishing in the Keys. As a board, we decided to follow his platform as being prominent in the Keys, first.
Board member Jim Sharpe reached out to Jeremy from Wesley house. Jeremy and myself jumped on a phone call and set up a meeting at the Square Grouper.
I had found out just three days prior that I was pregnant. It’s a small town and word had already spread. I got some big hugs from friends and ran into a friend of my father’s. She looked at me and almost started crying. She gave me a huge hug and expressed how happy my dad would have been. Beth and Jeremy gave me a huge hug as well.
With my new upcoming role of motherhood, a place like Wesley House serves an important role in our community, and our relationship together can give the kids a chance to embrace fishing in the Florida Keys. I was born in the Keys and know that if you don’t embrace the water down here, you will be very bored. Hopefully, our work together can spark that addiction to fishing, serve as some positive reinforcement, or for a break from their life on land. Some of these kids are subjected to things that many of us can’t imagine.
I know my father would whole heartedly approved of this relationship and luckily our board of directors completely agreed. In saying that, I’m excited to announce our new partnership with Wesley House and look forward to, at the very least, putting smiles on some well deserving faces.
And, I’m happy to report that work is already underway. We recently had the opportunity to take out “Chris,” who with his four siblings is in the Wesley House foster program. If it wasn’t for this program, families like his would likely be split up through Monroe County and possibly even Miami-Dade. As you can see from the pictures, it was an amazing day of fishing and we were honored to have him with us.