Second Bridge program, director will help foster children in McHenry County

Jim Ringness presents Alicia Wehby with her award during the annual Everyday Heroes awards breakfast on Thursday, March 12, 2020 at the Holiday Inn in Crystal Lake.

Kids in Need of McHenry County brought the Second Bridge nonprofit under its umbrella this month with the hiring of its founder, Alicia Wehby, officials said.

Second Bridge provides beds, bedding, clothing, shoes, toys and anything else needed to care for a foster child during the transition period after they’re placed into foster care system.

Wehby will oversee the Second Bridge program as its director, according to a news release from Kids in Need of McHenry County.

“Alicia’s love for children and support of their caregivers is such a blessing,” Kids in Need Executive Director Michelle Prickett said in a statement. “We are lucky to have her.”

Wehby’s new role as director began Feb. 1. She has 15 years of experience as a foster parent and also ran a Stuff the Duffel fundraiser.

Second Bridge served foster youth with the Stuff the Duffel program within in McHenry County and surrounding counties, Prickett said. The two nonprofits merged this month and Second Bridge came underneath Kids in Need as a program.

McHenry-based Kids in Need serves children via social work requests while also supporting and working with other nonprofits who serve children.

Most recently Kids in Need opened a visitation home for foster children in McHenry County, Prickett said. Before that, kids met with their biological parents in restaurants and parks, and with the COVID-19 pandemic, biological parents weren’t able to see their children, which prompted the opening of the home in Crystal Lake.

“The effort (Kids in Need) is making right now is to combine our resources between Second Bridge and our organization because it makes sense,” Prickett said. “Our donors don’t have to choose which organization to give to. We’re going to be one organization.”