When Valada Sargent retired in August after 25 years teaching at Farmington High School, she began looking for meaningful volunteer opportunities.
She found several, including a new chapter of For Goodness Cakes, a national organization with new regional chapters. Through volunteers, the group provides birthday and graduation cakes to children in foster care and young people overcoming adversity to feel recognized, celebrated and loved on their special day. I’m trying to make you feel
For Sargent, it sounded perfect.
“I was like, ‘Are you kidding? Can you make cakes for people?'” she said. I thought it was a cool way to do it.”
The Metro Detroit chapter of For Goodness Cakes is co-led by Jaime Luczak of Plymouth and Dana Gannon of Canton. The duo is looking for a volunteer baker, known within the organization as the Sprinkle Squad.
Volunteers must be 18 years or older. However, young bakers can participate with adults. All students are required to complete a mandatory online orientation before starting. Once approved, volunteers can access an online task calendar to list upcoming baking opportunities with all the details (age of recipient, date of delivery, whether children have specific requests, etc.) .
“For example, if he really likes Baby Sharks, wants blue cake, and wants chocolate with chocolate frosting, he can say that.”
Cakes need to be baked carefully, but they don’t have to look like they came from a professional bakery.
“We definitely have a very talented baker in our Sprinkle Squad, and we’ve had some beautiful cakes, so some people are a little scared,” Gannon said. Even if you’ve never baked a cake before, even if you just want to help your kids celebrate a special day in their lives… some kids have never celebrated a birthday. But it means more to children, it means the world to them.”
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Alisha Heika, Mentoring Director of Royal Family Kids Plymouth, Northridge Church’s outreach in Plymouth, agrees.
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The group, which serves foster children in Wayne, Washtenaw and Oakland counties, recently signed up as a For Goodness Cakes recipient and the kids love it.
“Many children in foster care don’t even know when their birthday is,” says Hejka. “Many of them had never had a birthday party before.
Kids often couldn’t believe it when their personalized cake arrived. They just kept asking, “Is this really for me?” It’s a great opportunity to show these kids that they are special and important, and these cakes really help with that.
Want to learn more or join the For Goodness Cakes Sprinkle Squad? Visit the For Goodness Cakes Detroit chapter website.
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Please contact reporter Laura Colvin at firstname.lastname@example.org or 248-221-8143.