The Wings of Hope Foundation was founded in memory of Brian Christopher Lanier who died from injuries received in an automobile accident in 1992. Brian was a compassionate 19-year-old who cared about children who, in his words, “need a chance at a better life.”
Kathy Gautsch, Brian’s mother, together with tremendous support of family and friends, created Wings of Hope as a symbol of Brian’s soaring spirit. Its purpose is to help abused, abandoned and neglected children in Central Florida.
Since its inception in 1996, the Wings of Hope Foundation has raised more than $140,000 to help the plight of abused children. The Foundation’s main fundraiser is a live and silent auction held each November with support from a vast array of more than 300 individuals and businesses.
Based in Ponce Inlet, Florida, the Wings of Hope Foundation primarily supports the Children’s Home Society residential homes in Volusia County and the residential homes of Girls and Boys Town in Orange County.
Because of the Foundation’s fundraising and dedication, these program were able to secure vans for transporting children to medical and counseling appointments, recreational activities as well as school. They were also able to furnish an emergency shelter facility and provide home improvements where needed to existing facilities.
This year, in recognition of the assistance given by Wings of Hope, the residential home for teenage boys at the Children’s Home Society renamed its facility “Brian’s House.” Also, Girls and Boys Town opened their new emergency children’s shelter and dedicated the “Wings of Hope Nursery.”
In the spirit of Brian, the Wings of Hope Foundation’s goal is that all children have Wings – the strength of an eagle, the guidance of an angel and the new life of a butterfly and Hope – that they have the opportunity to make their lives better.