About 140 advisers, associates and support staff members of the Merrill Lynch Chicago West Complex have “adopted” some 50 foster children from the Children's Home + Aid in Evanston, Ill.
According to Roger P. Theis, that's the perfect ratio.
Mr. Theis, a first vice president with Merrill Lynch in Oak Brook, Ill., is team leader for this 28-year-old volunteer project.
“The reason this volunteer relationship has been so successful is because our contributors match up well with the size of this organization,” he said. “With 50 kids, we can see we are making a difference.”
The employees have raised more than $250,000 over the past 10 years to provide for the children. They personally shop for the kids three times a year: for Christmas toys, Easter goodies and springtime sporting goods, and back-to-school supplies.
Warm relationships have developed, with the children often visiting the offices of volunteers, many of whom also go to the foster home.
“This project has a meaningful impact on the employees,” Mr. Theis said. “It excites them and generates a lot of enthusiasm as they work together for a common mission.”