Ann: Ladies and gentlemen, here’s Salia and Jaana.
Salia: Hi, everyone. As many know, my name is Salia and this is my mom. First and foremost, I want to thank everyone for coming out early to support New Directions. The mission of NDFW is something that I believe in because of my own experiences. Some of you may remember that I shared my story last year and some of you may have already seen the video that just played. If my speech last year or that video didn’t make you cry or donate, then there is something terribly wrong.
The story of a child, mother and family healing is extremely powerful and why I choose to share my story. If it helped just one person today, then it makes all the nerves worth it. It’s not always easy speaking in front of people and I actually feel more comfortable in this sort of setting than doing presentations to my class of other nine-year-olds.
I must take after my mom and I am practicing so that I can be President one day.
I do still dream of being an artist of some kind. Lately I’ve really gotten into music, especially Billie Eilish. When Tania asked me what I wanted to be when I got older, I decided I would still like to teach at New Direction one day. Something that is important in our family is service and I want to follow my mom’s footsteps by making a commitment to women and other children. So with that, I want to introduce my future boss, Gina Tabrizy. She is in charge of all the therapists at New Directions and makes sure the women and kids living there get what they need. She has a very important ask for you. Here she is!