(Story and picture courtesy of the United Way of Hancock County)
The many ways caring individuals can get involved in the lives of youth were highlighted at the “Not Our Kids” Child Abuse Prevention Awareness Luncheon and Panel in Findlay.
The event outlined simple efforts to help kids, such as reading to children at the library or packing weekend meal bags for students, to high-level commitments like serving as a CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocate) for a child in the legal system or becoming a foster parent. Regardless of their level of involvement, attendees were assured that their efforts would have a direct, positive impact on the youth they serve.
“There are so many ways to get involved in children’s lives, from mentoring to coaching, all the way up to serving as a foster parent for one of the approximately 50 foster children in Hancock County’s care at any given time,” said Randy Galbraith, director of Hancock County Job & Family Services. “I guarantee you that no matter what avenue you take to help, that child will be set on a better path.”
Galbraith expressed thanks to the many local agencies working to keep kids safe, noting that the community is rich in resources dedicated to serving youth. He added that each organization has a need for volunteers or help in some capacity.
“What if we are a community that says, ‘We are not going to lose one of our vulnerable children,'” said Angela DeBoskey, CEO of United Way of Hancock County.
DeBoskey noted that through its partnerships with local agencies dedicated to helping kids, United Way can make introductions for new volunteers and help them discover the various ways they can get involved. Call the United Way at 419-423-1432 to get started.
Galbraith offered special thanks to all of Hancock County’s foster families. Anyone interested in learning more about fostering children can call JFS at 419-429-8065.
A recording of the presentation can be seen on the Hancock County Job and Family Services Facebook page below.