The Community Fund of Darien

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"The Darien Public Schools are pleased to be a partner with so many community organizations who are committed to supporting the Thriving Youth initiative in Darien.  With so many wonderful young people in this town, it is easy to take them and their many successes for granted.  The Thriving Youth initiative is an important avenue for youth to have greater voice and to strengthen their place in Darien”
~Don Fiftal, Former Superintendent of Schools  2005-2010


                   Click here to see the 2010

                    Thriving Youth newsletter



      What ever happened to CARE Darien?


   It's not gone - it was transformed!  We are still working on creating a "Community of Accountability and Respect for Everyone".  CARE Darien was born out of the asset category of "Boundaries and Expectations" so you can be sure we will continue our efforts to build those assets in town.



                                                                           The Darien Youth Asset Team                                                                                                        




Involving all sectors of our community, we are a catalyst in Darien for developmental asset building through meaningful experiences, opportunities, skills and relationships that benefit all our children.

For more information about Thriving Youth: Connected Community, please contact Coordinator Martha Rhein at The Community Fund of Darien  203-655-8775.

Results from the fall of 2011 survey are in and the Thriving Youth task force is busy looking at the data and sharing it with the community.  Click here for the results and a presentation of the results.

                                Thriving Youth Asset-building Tips                                              

You can build assets every day, everywhere, as many times as you want.  Once you start looking,  you'll find plenty of opportunities that fit your time, energy, resources, commitment and comfort level.  Below are some suggestions for organizations and businesses to promote assets through "tips".  These are focused on the asset categories of "Support" and "Social Competencies".

  • Ask your children about their favorite books.  Why do/did they enjoy them so much?  Share your childhood favorites and talk about a book you recently read that you enjoyed.
  • Talk to your children about decision making.  share how you make decisions, weighing pros and cons, considering the consequences.  Try to empower them to make some of their own decisions.  Talk about what you may have learned from bad decisions.
  • Ask your children if they have ever had to help resolve a disagreement between two or more friends. If so, how did they handle it?  Talk about  peaceful conflict resolution.
  • Ask your children to describe their 3 best friends.  What qualities do they have in common and what makes them unique?
  • Ask your children if they have ever had their trust broken.  How do they think it gets repaired?
  • Get to know the other adults in your children's life (teachers, coaches, neighbors, etc.) Show appreciation for the positive adults in your child's life and talk to your children about your gratitude.
  • Ask your children if they think they are role models for anyone.  Why? Be a good role model - remember that kids hear and see things more than you think.

                                           From the Search Institute resource "Pass It On"

Please join us!  Even your smallest actions can make a difference!

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Thriving Youth Task Force Members

                                    Diane Barston

YWCA Darien/Norwalk

                                    Lavi Ben-Zvi

Darien Elementary Schools

                                    Carrie Bernier

The Community Fund

                                    Sam Boccuzzi

Police Department

                                    Jessica Buchanan

The Center

                                    Mark Cappelli

Police Department

                                    Sue DeNunzio

Darien Community Fund

                                    Ellen Dunn

Darien High School

                                    Allegra Erickson

Middlesex Middle School

                                    Julia Ford

Middlesex Middle School

                                    Erica Gauquier

Darien Library        

                                    Ingrid Gillispie


                                    April Greene

YMCA of Darien

                                    Barry Halpin

Liberation Programs

                                    Pam Ha-Stevenson

YWCA Darien/Norwalk

                                    Mary Joggerst

Child Guidance

                                    Susan Marks

Town of Darien

                                    Jennifer Montanaro

The Depot

                                    Claire Moore

Darien Library

                                    Pat Morrissey

Darien YMCA

                                    Erika Morro

The Community Fund

                                    Robin Nelson


                                    Tara Ochman


                                    Laurie Orem

The Community Fund

                                   James Palmieri

Darien High School

                                   Marc Power

Middlesex Middle School

                                   Denise Qualey

Kids In Crisis

                                   Ali Ramsteck

Darien Human Services

                                   Martha Rhein

Thriving Youth Conn. Comm.

                                   Paul Ribeiro

Darien High School

                                   Jamie Roach-Murray

Stamford Pediatrics

                                   Amanda Romaniello

Family Centers

                                   Alicia Sillars

Darien Youth Commission

                                   Margot Congdon

Darien High School

                                   Winnie Smith

Saint Luke's Episcopal Church

                                   Anthony Sweeney

Darien High School

                                   Jonathan Thomas

St. Luke's Episcopal Church

                                   Kristen Tomasiewicz

Kids In Crisis

                                   Terrie Van de Graaf

Darien High School