2018 was a year of challenges. The reporting of child abuse was at an all-time high in Fort Bend County. We provided life-changing services to 2586 children and families, an increase of 23% in just one year.
On the good side, this meant that more children than ever received services through our CASA and Children’s Advocacy Center – every child in foster care was matched with a CASA Advocate to provide them a voice and ensure that they did not fall through the cracks, 54% more children received a forensic interview where they could tell their story of abuse in a safe place so they could end their silence, 3080 therapy sessions helped children heal from the trauma of abuse, and high school youth benefited from life skills training and higher education prep so that they will be successful when they “age out” and don’t fall prey to the horrible statistics of homelessness, trafficking, substance abuse and incarceration that afflicts thousands of foster youth who don’t get the training and support provided at Child Advocates of Fort Bend.
On the flip side, higher reporting meant that we were stretched beyond our resources – doubling up shifts, working into the night, hiring contract and part-time staff and training more volunteer advocates. It was through your generous support that enabled us to be able to respond in a timely fashion to the need with the same quality, professional services that has set Child Advocates of Fort Bend apart for nearly three decades.
As we look forward to 2019, our outlook is as bright as ever. We will expand services, hire more staff, train more volunteers and reach even more children. Our board and management team are working diligently to design a “state-of-the-art” resource for Fort Bend County to respond to the growth in our county, the increasing need for services for these children, and to stay true to our commitment to serve EVERY child who has been abused and neglected, even as the demand for services increases by double-digits.
Thank you for having a heart for children, for your loyal support and for your commitment to making our community, our families, and our children safe, healthy and strong.
Chief Executive Officer