Lindsey Williamson, Mike and Shea Cocklereece, Steve Schneider, and Jason and Lindsey Faircloth are part of the Leadership Council of the local chapter of the national organization Safe Families for Children. The mission of this non-profit is to give families at risk some temporary support to lessen the likelihood that the children will require the assistance of the foster care system.
The goal is to leverage the ready-made “community” found in our area churches to offer these families a circle of support, something most of us have through family, friends, and co-workers. Assistance by church volunteer teams most often includes temporary housing for the children involved, babysitting, financial help, counseling, and more, until the parents can get over the hurdles that are putting their children at risk. The average time a child might stay with a host family is six weeks.
Over 50,000 children have been placed with thoroughly vetted and trained volunteers through the nationwide organization, with 95% of the children being reunited with their parents at the resolution of the assistance. The advantages of this program are that it’s less upsetting to the child, no court is involved, and it lessens the burden on the local foster care system.
To be a hero to a family in crisis, please consider becoming a benefactor or volunteer. Donations through the website are currently being matched at a 50% level through Dec. 31st. If you think your church might be interested in becoming a volunteer community for Safe Family for Children, a representative will be glad to come talk to your congregation about the roles of volunteers. For more information, see the website https://carrollcounty.safe-families.org/contact.