A local Fresh Air Fund story

| 28 Sep 2011 | 02:50

    sussex county — Each summer since 2003, Julie and Kevin Noble of Sparta, along with their three children, have hosted Mataya Godbolt, a 9-year-old girl from Harlem. They found out about the Fresh Air Fund's Friendly Town program through their neighbors, Donna and Herb Butzke, who have hosted a Fresh Air child for six years. When Mataya comes to visit, the Nobles plan a trip to the "Land of Make Believe," a water and amusement park in Hope. They also go to the local beach, and go on a camping trip with the Butzkes and their Fresh Air child. However, according to Julie Noble, they have the most fun "just hanging out" with Mataya. Megan Noble, who is 8-years-old, connected quickly with Mataya, and the two enjoy hanging out on the hammock and chatting. When asked what she would say to a potential host family, Julie Noble said "not to worry", and hosting is less difficult and less stressful than most people imagine it would be. The Fresh Air Fund is always looking for host families for their Friendly Town program, to enable as many New York City children as possible to benefit from a summer vacation outside the city. By sharing the Noble family's story, they hope to inspire more local families to open their homes and their hearts to an inner-city child this summer. Julie and Kevin Noble can be reached at 973-726-3440. Or call the Fresh Air Fund at 1-800-367-0003.