FOR VALERIE’S HOUSE NEW FAMILY IS FOREVER HOME
FORT MYERS, FLA. March 29, 2023 – Valerie’s House is one giant step closer to completing its dream of having a home of its own for grieving children and families in Lee County with the donation of $100,000 in landscaping services from Juniper, a Fort Myers-based company with offices throughout Florida.
Juniper will be providing all design, landscape, irrigation and outdoor lighting on the one acre site at 3551 Shoemaker Lane in Fort Myers.
Juniper is the latest in a long list of community support for Valerie’s House, which initially began with the donation of the one acre property from the City of Fort Myers in November of 2019. The project is now 50 percent complete with an anticipated opening this fall.
“We are grateful for all of the people who continue to want to be a part of Valerie’s House,” said Founder and CEO Angela Melvin. “Having the talents of Juniper for our outdoor areas is helping us bring this house of healing to life with the Old Florida style that we love.”
“The design will include a memory garden, walking trail, larger, mature trees and outdoor lighting so the spaces can be enjoyed into the evenings,” said Dan deMont, chief revenue officer for Juniper.
“Juniper Cares, our charitable fund, has primarily focused its outreach and support on worthy youth organizations. Valerie’s House could not be a better example of that,” deMont said.
A total of $2.6 million has been raised toward the $3 million cost of the new home that is under construction on land donated by the City of Fort Myers under a $1 per year lease.
The home will be a cozy, warm, old Florida style structure. The 7,000-square-foot facility will also allow Valerie’s House to help more children and provide wrap-around services, such as individual grief counseling to support families who desperately need it.
Valerie’s House is still looking for sponsors for several areas in the home, including the playground area, the activities gazebo and some of the children’s rooms.
“If you haven’t donated yet, please consider being a part of our family,” Melvin said. “We are so close to reaching our goal. When the doors open later this year, you will know you are a part of this legacy for our community.”
Valerie’s House has helped more than 2,000 children and their families since its founding in 2016 by Angela Melvin, whose mother Valerie was killed in a car accident in 1987.
One in seven children in Florida is predicted to lose a parent or sibling before the age of 25, according to the 2022 Childhood Bereavement Estimation Model.
Valerie’s House currently offers peer support groups and other activities at locations in Fort Myers, Naples, Punta Gorda, Port Charlotte and Pensacola. Valerie’s House is a United Way partner agency and is fully supported by community donations.
About Valerie’s House
Valerie’s House opened in January 2016 and has served more than 2,000 children and their families from Lee, Collier, Charlotte, and Hendry counties. The organization provides a safe, comfortable place for children to share, grieve and heal together following the death of a close family member. Valerie’s House has three locations: 1762 Fowler St. in downtown Fort Myers, 819 Myrtle Terrace in Naples and group therapy meetings at several churches in Charlotte County. For more information, visit www.valerieshouse.org
Juniper was founded in 2001 and has grown to become the 17th largest landscape provider in the United States, according to Lawn & Landscape Magazine. The Fort Myers-based company employs 2,200 people in 18 branches throughout Florida. For more information, visit www.junipercares.com
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