The Guardian Angel Settlement Association is a nonprofit organization that strives to help people improve their lives and become financially stable.
It was established more than 150 years ago by the Daughters of Charity, which was originally an orphanage for girls. It later evolved into a community-based agency serving all sorts of individuals in the greater St. Louis area.
“On a daily basis, I know that my work is having a real impact on people’s lives. That’s a great feeling. It’s also a constant source of motivation to know that I’m surrounded by colleagues who feel exactly the same way,” said Matthew LeDuc, development associate.
The association reports that every year volunteers devote more than 11,000 hours annually to help them serve their clients. People of different ages and all sorts of lifestyles come together and help do their share by helping the agency serve those in need.
The organization provides three service areas: early childhood development, emergency assistance and self-sufficiency programming. These programs help individuals feel safe while pursuing their independence.
In addition to those the services, Guardian Angel operates a resale shop called Angel Boutique, which is located at 2700 Cherokee St. At the shop, patrons can find gently used furniture, clothing and household necessities.
With the holidays right around the corner, the association will have upcoming Thanksgiving and Christmas programs. Programs like these help get everyone in spirit and brighten up their holidays. The association is always looking for food and gift donations. Foods like frozen turkeys, dressing, mashed potatoes, gravy and canned fruits and vegetables — as well as new, unwrapped gifts for children and adults of all ages. The association relies on the community and accepts donations year-round.
Everybody needs someone to believe in them, someone who understands that life gets tough and that it is okay to hit some rough patches along the way. At Guardian Angel Settlement Association there is a full staff and a numerous volunteers that do just that.
Not everyone was born into a fortunate family, some have struggled to get to where they are today, and some of are still struggling. But, everyone can have a guardian angel by their side thanks to the association.
Visit the website at www.gasastl.org or call 314-231-3188.
Sabina Schaaf is a senior at Mehlville High School.