The Significance of May
Submitted by: Michelle Zombeck
CASA Program Director
When thinking about the month of May many people associate it with warmer weather, the rebirth of nature, and watching spring gradually bloom into summer. For people that work with children and families, it also represents National Foster Care month. A time to recognize, show appreciation, and gratitude to our foster parents in Gratiot County and across the nation.
Ask any person involved in foster care and they will say it is hard work. Abused and neglected children hurt. However, foster parents make the difference in the lives of these children. Some foster parents make a difference not only in the life of the child, but also the child's biological family
In Gratiot County alone, we have an amazing group of families that play a part in enhancing the lives of children and youth in foster care. Unfortunately, the need is still great. We have
over 437,000 children and youth in foster care nationwide
. We have children and youth in our community that need your help. The search for supportive, loving, and caring people to become foster parents is on. It is essential that we find people who can provide for the safety, permanency, and well-being for children and youth. For more information, visit MICHIGAN.GOV/HOPEFORAHOME
If foster care is not right for you, there are many other ways to support children in the child welfare system. Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) is another program that allows people with a passion for children to get involved. CASA of Gratiot County is a unique volunteer program that takes people from all walks of life and trains them to advocate on behalf of children involved in abuse and neglect cases. Volunteers meet with assigned children weekly and communicate with all parties involved in a case in order to make recommendations on behalf of the child in court. CASA volunteers are a constant in the life of a child. They walk side by side ensuring that the child is supported, cared for and their voice is heard through their journey of permanency.
Our foster care system also needs transporters and respite care providers. Our foster children need items such as new clothing, pajamas and toiletry items. Monetary donations make it possible for services such as extra-curricular activities, gas cards and other direct needs.
Learn how you can get involved by contacting Child Advocacy's CASA Program Director, Michelle Zombeck at 989-463-1422.