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$200,000 Challenge Grant Also Announced

FORT MYERS, FLA. December 14, 2022 – California Closets has made a major commitment to Valerie’s House for its new Lee County Forever Home under construction at 3551 Shoemaker Lane in Fort Myers.

California Closets has donated $50,000 to sponsor one of the new grief therapy rooms in Valerie’s House and additionally has committed to helping design and donate the materials and labor to install the built-in shelving and closets throughout the home, including the special Teddy Bear Library the children and families have come to love inside Valerie’s House.

“We are grateful to California Closets for their creativity and commitment to making the Valerie’s House Forever Home a comfortable and special space for our families,” said Valerie’s House Founder and CEO Angela Melvin.  “The generosity of owners Bo Woods and Suzi Henderson ensures that this home will truly be one of a kind as we fulfill our mission that no child will ever grieve alone.”

Woods said this family has been a supporter of Valerie’s House for several years and the California Closets team will be personally involved in installing their custom pieces.

“Our goal is to apply our expertise and product to create a calm, organized space that allows the staff at Valerie’s House to focus on what matters most,” Woods said. “Everyone within our company will be involved in helping make this possible.”

In more Valerie’s House Forever Home news,  Melvin announced a friend of one of the Valeries House families has pledged to match every dollar raised up to $200,000 between now and December 31.

A total of $2.5 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.

“If you haven’t donated yet, please consider being a part of this special challenge before the end of the year,” Melvin said. “We are so close to reaching our goal. When the doors open next year, you will know you are a part of this legacy for our community.’

The home will be a cozy, warm, old Florida style structure, with special rooms like a volcano room, which allows children to work out any anger or other emotions they have because of their loss.  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.

Lennar Homes is acting as the project manager for the construction of the home, which is expected to be completed by mid-2023.

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.

Several room sponsorship opportunities for the community are available. To make a donation, visit, call 239-478-6734, or email Project Manager Sterling Lund at [email protected].

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

About California Closets

For more than 40 years, California Closets has built a reputation as a leader in premium and luxury space management, delivering truly custom products and unparalleled service California Closets sees home as more than just a place—it is a source of comfort and refuge, a space for connection and celebration. Committed to offering quality custom storage solutions, California Closets helps give people a sense or organization that allows them to focus on what matters most. Today, there are 120 showrooms and 700+ designers across North America.

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