As the nation continues to grapple with COVID-19 pandemic shutdowns, Middletown-based Embrace Home Loans is delivering some holiday cheer to the children of its employees—even if they can’t get together in person.

Since this past summer and throughout the holidays, Embrace has been hosting online Zoom events for its employees’ kids. Children who attend “online recess” get to participate in storytelling, singing, acting, artwork and other activities. The online events are led by Alexandra Fortin, an actress and nanny based in New York City.

“Normally we’d have summer, Halloween, and holiday get-togethers for the kids at our office, including our huge annual party,” said Dana Fortin, Embrace’s chief marketing officer, and Alexandra’s mother in a provided statement. “Rather than cancel or postpone employee activities this year, we’ve gotten creative and come up with ways to evolve employee engagement and experiences to fit our newly remote workforce.”

Embrace Home Loans says that the online recess will continue as long as the pandemic keeps children’s parents from going into the office. Kids who sign up for Embrace’s online recess receive gift packages from Embrace that include books, crafts, snacks, and other items. (Further Reading:

“It takes some coordination to get everything out to the kids, but it has been so worth it,” said Jennifer O’Neil, Embrace’s director of corporate communications in a statement. “Not only are the kids excited, but the parents are, too. I get so many emails from our team who are grateful that the company cares about their kids’ happiness. It feels fantastic just to do something extra to lift everyone’s spirits and support their wellbeing during these crazy times.”

Catch a glimpse at some of the Zoom events Embrace has created for the children of its employees below.

Ryan Belmore is the Owner and Publisher of What'sUpNewp. Although not the founder or original owner, Belmore has been with What'sUpNewp since its early beginnings in 2012.

Belmore was born in Providence, Rhode Island; grew up and graduated high school in Coventry, Rhode Island; and lived in Newport, Rhode Island for more than ten years. He currently serves as Vice President of the Board Of Directors for Fort Adams Trust and on the Board of Directors for Potter League For Animals.

He and his wife, Jen, as well as their two dogs (Aero and June), recently moved to Alexandria, Virginia. Belmore travels back and forth to Newport every couple of weeks to cover events, work on story ideas, to meet with What'sUpNewp's on-the-ground contributors, to visit friends, and to eat as much seafood as possible.

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