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In Lieu of Gifts - Thank You


I met Samantha and her brother, Sebastian, years ago through the Garden of Dreams foundation. I immediately connected with their entire family. My little buddy Sebastian is (now) 13 years old and was born with Cerebral Palsy- his energy and love of life is evident every time you see him. Samantha (I can’t believe it) is now 18 years old - I remember when she was such a little girl! What a pillar of strength. In addition to being her brother’s biggest fan, she has Ulcerative Colitis. This disease caused her to be home schooled at times because she wasn’t able to consistently attend classes. Samantha, even with all of her unimaginable struggles and obstacles, was able to maintain a 4.0 GPA getting her into Fordham University! She received two partial scholarships- one from Fordham and the other from the Garden of Dreams foundation. Her parents, Idalia and Abel are the most wonderful, hard working people. I just love this entire family.

We are so excited for Samantha to become the big-time journalist we know she will be!

Erik and I have decided to donate all our wedding gifts to supplement the rest of Samantha’s tuition so she can attend FORDHAM (woo-hoo!) worry-free for the next for years.


Thank you for helping us support Samantha's dream of becoming a journalist!

Jill and Erik

The Garden of Dreams Foundation is a non-profit charity dedicated to bringing life-changing opportunities to young people in need. To learn more, please visit


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