Our stories. . . .
From the time he was a child, Matt deKay has been guided by a life of service. His father’s mealtime prayer always closed with the words, “Let us not forget those less fortunate than ourselves.” The resounding words of a father’s earnest prayer shaped his son’s perspective on the importance of helping others. Matt’s life and chosen career in medicine continue to inspire a new generation called to help others and to create solutions to the social problems our community faces.
Through his volunteer efforts at Catholic Charities, Matt and his wife Jeanette became acutely aware of the problem of homelessness in the Four Corners, the deKay’s knew something more had to be done and believed they were called to help.
The timing of the Four Corners Foundation is not, as Matt fervently believes, a coincidence. As the deKay’s began sharing their vision with friends and colleagues, the Four Corners Foundation was established. Every member of the board came forward of their own accord willing to offer their professional experience, time, and heart to the humanitarian work.
The Four Corners Foundation has from its beginning been an organization seeking to combine its efforts and resources with other successful, responsible not-for-profit programs and services already established in the area. This unique approach of local collaboration maximizes the impact made within the local community.
Doing good in the present generates more good in the future. When we take action and work together to create solutions to social problems, the effort comes back to the community tenfold. We do well to remember those less fortunate because by helping the least of these, we are fulfilling a higher purpose and creating a better community and world.
Rebecca Gomez, 86 years young when the PATH Shelter was built, wanted to do something for the residents coming into the new emergency shelter. While the new shelter was being built, Rebecca and her family were busy “building” new handmade quilts. As construction continued, the number of quilts increased until there were over 100 handmade quilts – one for every bed at the new shelter. The Gomez family’s gift was truly a family affair inspired by their mother and grandmother, Rebecca. She wanted residents to know the comfort and security of a quilt made especially for them.
The Briones family is creating a lasting legacy in the Four Corners. For three generations, this family has impacted the local community through their generosity. Believing that service and giving are essential family values, the Briones family is investing in a brighter future for all generations in the Four Corners.
Gradparents, Felix and Vi Briones have resided in the Farmington area since 1959 and have been very generous in their community and church service. Following in his parents’ footsteps, son Paul and his wife Terry, are continuing the legacy of giving by instilling the same values in their own five children. “It is important to teach our kids the responsibility to take care of those in need,” Paul says. Paul continues to be inspired by his parents’ ongoing charity to the local community. “They only continue working in order to continue giving,” he added.
The second generation of the Briones family saw a perfect opportunity to teach their children the value of helping others. They challenged the children to explore ways that they could give to the Four Corners Foundation. A few years ago, the kids unanimously voted to give up cable television in order to make a donation toward the emergency housing project. Today, the eldest, Francine has completed college and is now sending her to FCF via her company's United Way account.
Paul runs a successful busy law practice, and is devoted to the pro bono legal work needed by the Foundation. Despite personal sacrifices, Paul and his wife haven’t wavered in their commitments toward helping others in the community.
The generational example of service and giving exemplified by the Briones family is an inspiration to us all. Like a ripple effect, the good we do in our lifetimes continues to create positive impact well into the future.