Andres lost one of his biggest mentors he could ever have with the passing of his father, U.S. Army Sgt. Amaru A.
Without a father to help guide him through his formative years, Andres’ confidence was shaken. When Angels of America’s Fallen came into his life, Andres gained a whole support network that allowed him to choose a healthy, positive activity along with access to other mentors and case management for his family.
Ultimately, Andres pursued playing basketball at the local YMCA in Florida.
“Andres loves playing basketball at the YMCA,” Andres’ mother wrote. “It gives him an outlet to improve his skills and confidence.”
Many families of fallen military and first responders also lack financial security with a single parent income, along with the grief that comes with losing a loved one.
“If it wasn’t for the generosity of the donors of Angels of America’s Fallen, this wouldn’t be possible since I am on a tight budget,” Andres’ mother wrote about the opportunity provided to her family.
There are more than 16,000 children who have lost a parent who died as a result of military service since 9/11, and most of the children are very young at the time of loss (average age – 7).
Focused on the formative years of childhood, Angels enables financially strapped, and psychologically and emotionally drained families of America’s fallen to begin or continue beneficial extracurricular activities.
Statistics show that the children have a greater likelihood for depression, anxiety, poor academic performance, behavior problems, substance abuse, and even suicide. Angels of America’s Fallen mitigates these risks by providing regular opportunities for participation in extracurricular interest such as sports, fitness, art, music, theater and other activities. Research demonstrates that feeling connected and engaged with at least two areas outside of family such as school/afterschool activities, positive peers, athletics, employment, religion, culture and the arts is a protective factor that can mitigate the risks associated with parental loss. (U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Office of Adolescent Health, April 2016)
Join us in honoring the long-term commitment Angels makes to children of the Fallen. If you are interested in donating or learning more about our organization, visit https://aoafallen.org/donate.