It’s hard to believe that Hurricane Harvey hit us a little over 2 weeks ago! As we get back into our daily routines and recoup from the aftermath of the hurricane, we are uplifted by images of members of our community pitching in together to help each other.
Child Advocates of Fort Bend is a child focused, volunteer driven, community centered organization. These are our core values. It is who we are and it is who are volunteers are. As we re-organized last week, this became even more evident and I am awed by our wonderful staff and dedicated volunteers.
Several of our staff and volunteers were forced to evacuate, had damage to their homes and some were victims of the flooding. Two of our Children’s Advocacy Center staff members came in for an emergency interview to prevent the perpetrator from being able to flee in the chaos of the storm. Other staff were in touch with each other, our partners and volunteers, to make sure that the children we serve were all okay. Our volunteers were in contact with the children they serve during the storm. One volunteer called the child’s placement prior to the hurricane to ask about an evacuation plan for the child. Another volunteer, whose own home was damaged by a tornado, checked in on her CASA child to ensure that the child was safe during the flooding. Another visited her CASA during the storm to ensure that the child was safe. Still another, not only checked in on his CASA children several times a day, but he updated the child’s relatives to let them know that the children were safe. That they were focused on the children when their own safety was in question shows their dedication and compassion for the children we serve.
Our MDT Coordinator, Joe Driver, who is a volunteer fire fighter, worked 12 hour shifts in Katy during the storm and helped rescue people from their homes and flood waters. All of our staff members have volunteered in some capacity since the storm and I am so proud of them.
Since our doors reopened a week ago, I am happy to report that all of the CASA children are safe, but many are in need of supplies and gift cards for gas, food or clothing. A few have been evacuated. One family served by our Children’s Advocacy Center was flooded for the second time and has lost everything and one child served by our CAC had a panic attack during the storm and had to be hospitalized for several days in a psychiatric hospital. All of these families are in need of some resources and we are working to help them. Most tragic, many of our children are suffering from trauma and our therapists are working hard to provide mental health services to help with their healing.
Thank you to all of our staff, partners and volunteers. Your compassion and dedicated to the children is what will help us to rebuild our community and put an end to the scourge of child abuse.
For the Children’s Sake,