25049166043_198932fa78_o-2 25045386844_bab9aa47a2_o-2 25649581426_af4c0c1023_o 25375133940_79c56748cf_o i am honored to be partnering with valley of sun united way to share a wonderful program called "breakfast in the classroom". for many children in our community, breakfast is much more than a morning meal; it’s a vital pathway to successful learning, good health, and a sense of security. breakfast in the classroom is an innovative program supported by united way, the arizona department of education, and the dairy council of arizona to make sure all kids in our community start the day off with a good meal. the initiative takes the traditional school breakfast approach and improves it with one key ingredient: the classroom. breakfast is served after the opening bell to ensure it is available to all children. schools provide nutritious, good-tasting food in a safe, happy, non-stressful environment in the presence of their friends and a caring adult. this means that no matter what, a child is able to start their day with some much-needed nutrition and energy.

VSUW Breakfast in the Classroom Flyer copyin a statement recently released by the american academy of pediatricians (AAP), food insecurity is linked with lower cognitive performance, behavioral issues, and emotional distress among children of all ages. the report underscored that the inability to consistently provide food creates stress in families, contributing to depression, anxiety, and toxic stress. the breakfast in the classroom program does more than just offering food in the cafeteria for purchase before school begins, it integrates breakfast into the school day. it seeks to remove the stigma or financial hurdles associated with eating breakfast at school. it opens it up to everyone and makes it a nice part of the daily routine, an enjoyable start to the day, eating together with friends. i love the heart of this program. and truly, something as simple as a carton of milk and an apple can make a huge difference in the attitude, behavior, and overall performance of a child.

check out the breakfast in the classroom program page and if you would like to support the breakfast in the classroom program, you can donate here.

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okay, but here's the extra fun part: the valley of the sun united way will be hosting an event along with the women’s leadership council and all proceeds will go to breakfast in the classroom. this inspirational luncheon will feature leigh anne tuohy, the real-life mom from “the blind side."

Leigh Anne Tuohy the tenacious and inspiring real-life mom from “The Blind Side,” played by Sandra Bullock, is bringing her message of perseverance, philanthropy and empowerment to We Are United, a special Women’s Leadership Council luncheon on Thursday, April 7.

Valley of the Sun United Way is on a mission to provide Breakfast in The Classroom to 130 schools and more than 74,000 children throughout Maricopa County who currently do not have such a program.

These schools have high rates of poverty and hunger -- and our children are at risk of not having a steady, healthy, nutritious breakfast and they come unprepared for their school day.

i have the honor of hosting a table at the we are united event and would love to have you join me! i have a few seats still available at the table ($100 VIP seats) and would so enjoy and appreciate your being there to learn more about some of the great things valley of the sun united way is doing in our community!

April 7, 2016

The Arizona Biltmore

2400 E Missouri Avenue, Phoenix, Arizona 85016

11:00am – 1:00pm

>>> RESERVE YOUR SEAT HERE <<<

i am hoping to fill my table with some fantastic arizona ladies who want to support meaningful initiatives in our community. and of course, ladies who want to have some fun. i mean, a luncheon at the arizona biltmore to benefit a great cause? it doesn't get much better. i hope to see you there! and if you know anyone who might want to attend or donate, feel free to share the link to the event: bit.ly/1RAheLO


my thanks to valley of the sun united way for hosting this event and for reaching out. it is my pleasure to partner with you! here's to improving and enriching the lives of those around us.

you can learn more about valley of the sun united way and stay connected to them on instagram + facebook + twitter @ myvsuw