money for college books by studentloans


									 Children will be tomorrow what we make of them today.                                                                October 2007
Adoption Efforts Get Community Support
Adoption month celebrates finalized adoptions
by Joetta McCruter-Polk and                       children with
Felicia Newell                                    behavior challenges,

S   he was at church when foster and              and children with
    adoptive parent Patricia Hendrix              special needs.
received the notion that she could make a             Adoption Day is
difference in the lives of children in need.      celebrated across
“During church one Sunday, I saw another          the country through
church member who was a foster parent to a        the volunteer efforts
beautiful little girl. The child came up to me    of lawyers, foster
and asked, ‘Will you be my mother?” said          care and adoption
Hendrix. She was so moved by the little           professionals, child
girl’s plea that it motivated her to find out     advocates and local
more about fostering and adopting. “So here       judges on one spe- Foster parent Patricia Hendrix (center) will be adopting (left to right) Chastity,
I am, five years later and I’m a foster parent;   cial day to finalize Christian and Charity on National Adoption Day.
soon to be an adoptive parent.”                   the adoptions of
                                                                                                    7 p.m. in downtown Columbus. The play
    Hendrix has given her love and opened         children. This year, Children Services will
                                                                                                    will address the painful realities and deep
her home to a sibling group of three. On          partner with Capital University Law
                                                                                                    hurts of children and families, and will
November 14, National Adoption Day, she           School’s National Center for Adoption Law
                                                                                                    focus on the things that individuals and the
plans to make Charity, 16, Chastity, 14, and      and Policy, Nationwide Insurance, Wendy’s,
                                                                                                    community can do to bring hope to those
Christian, 10, a permanent part of her            the Dave Thomas Foundation for
                                                                                                    children and families. This play is an
family through adoption.                          Adoption, and Franklin County Domestic
                                                                                                    original production written and directed by
    There are more than 100 children under        Relations Court.
                                                                                                    Children Services employees Troy Lindsey
the care of Franklin County Children                  These collaborative efforts have
                                                                                                    and Daryle Cobb. This year’s production
Services who want to be adopted, but              arranged for 12 families to finalize the
                                                                                                    will include community partnerships by
continue to wait for a family. Children           adoption of 21 children, placing emphasis
                                                                                                    using the creative talents of adoptive
Services is hopeful that recruitment efforts      on sibling group adoptions. “This year we
                                                                                                    parent Arnie Smotherman, author Tina
in November, designed to celebrate                have two sets of three sibling groups being
                                                                                                    Carmichael and playwrite Travis Jones.
National Adoption Month, will highlight           adopted,” said Children Services Adoption
                                                                                                        Children Services will unveil the 2008
the need for more sisters and brothers to be      Director Kim Toler. “The sisters and
                                                                                                    All Kids Count Foster & Adoption
adopted. The profile of adoptable children        brothers who are available for adoption have a
                                                                                                    Calendar. This beautiful calendar features
in Central Ohio consists of African-              strong bond. They want to live together and
                                                                                                    adoptable children, along with foster and
American children over the age of 5,              for many of them, being adopted together helps
                                                                                                    adoptive families. The complimentary
Caucasian children over the age of 10,            them to maintain biological ties.”
                                                                                                    calendars will be available at the play and
sibling groups who want to remain together,           Children Services plans to raise
                                                                                                    distribution will continue throughout the
                                                  awareness about the need for adoption with
                                                  the premiere of a play entitled, A Cry From
                                                                                                        For more information about National
                                                  The Dark. The free play will be held on
                                                                                                    Adoption Month, Adoption Day and the
                                                  November 1 at the Southern Theater at
                                                                                                    calendar, call 341-6060.

                                                                                                            2     Holiday Wish Gearing Up

                                                                                                            3     TAP Youth Celebrate

                                                                                                            8     Adoptable Children
                                       The Joy of Giving
                    October 2007
                                       Sponsor a child through Holiday Wish
                                       by Megan Stevens

                                       “T      is better to give than to receive.”
                                               What does this phrase really
                                       mean? Across most cultures and
                Franklin County
                                       religions, giving gifts is a meaningful
            Children                   practice. Giving to others shows that
           Services                    we care about them and that they are
                                       important to us. When we give to
                                       others we receive the gifts of hope and
BOARD                                  joy, along with the satisfaction that we
Rhonda Evans, Chair                    are helping others.
Joseph Mas, Vice Chair                     The Holiday Wish program at
                                       Franklin County Children Services is
Joy Soll, Secretary                    the perfect example of giving and
G. Brent Bishop                        receiving. This special program allows
Sara Chase                             children under the care of Children
                                       Services to make a wish for a special toy
Marjorie Frazier                       or gift. Each child age 11 and younger
Jerry Hammond                          selects a toy or gift valued at $40, and
Jeni Horn                              each youth 12 and older will receive a
                                       $50 gift certificate. These children may
Gale King                              live in their own homes, foster homes,
Douglas Moore                          with relatives, or in residential care.
Necol Russell-Washington               Last year, community donors responded
                                       to 5,737 children’s holiday wishes.
                                           When community donors step
EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR                     forward to fill the holiday wishes of children under the care of Children Services, the
Eric Fenner                            children feel valued and believe they truly are important to their community. For
                                       donors, the sense of helping children and sharing the holiday spirit with those in need is
                                       what the holiday season is all about.
ACCENT on Kids STAFF                       Without the help of the community, there is no guarantee that these children will
Pam Prosser, Editor, 275-2520          experience the true spirit of giving and receiving. So it is important for individuals,
Fran Pruitt, Ed. Assistant, 275-2523   community groups, organizations, church groups and businesses to help these children
                                       know that someone cares about them.
Contributors:                              This year, with help from the Central Ohio community, more than 5,000 children
                                                                                                                will have a
Debborha Armstrong
                                                                                                                renewed belief in
Daryle Cobb                                                                                                     the spirit of giving.
Jason DeBord                                                                                                    To sponsor a child,
                                                                                                                or to make a
Vickie Dengg
                                                                                                                donation, call
Steve Jones                                                                                                     Santa’s Workshop
Kay Marshall                                                                                                    at Holiday Wish -
                                                                                                                275-2525. Holiday
Joetta McCruter-Polk
                                                                                                                Wish is located in
Felicia Newell                                                                                                  the Children
Pam Prosser                                                                                                     Services office
                                                                                                                located at 855
Fran Pruitt
                                            Generous community                                                  West Mound
Megan Stevens                               donors fill children’s                                              Street.
                                          holiday wishes.

2                           Franklin County Children Services              • October 2007
College-Bound Youth Honored by County
by Kay Marshall                                   City, Brio Tuscan Grille and The Ohio            Children Services. “We also know that our

F   or the second year, the Franklin County       State University.                                kids have overcome many challenges to get to
    Commissioners spearheaded an                      “Preparing for college takes confidence,     this point, and we want to help them in any
initiative to honor the accomplishments of        perseverance and a commitment to getting the     way we can to succeed. The support of the
college-bound students who have been in           job done,” said Commissioner Paula Brooks.       Commissioners and the corporate community
the care of Franklin County Children              “I am so proud of our youth, and I think our     leaders is much appreciated by our
Services. At an event at Easton Town              local partners who are helping to meet some of   college-bound youth and by those of us who
Center in August, 22 of the youth received        their back-to-school needs certainly know that   work with them.”
praise, encouragement and off-to-college          we are ALL Franklin County.”                         The Children Services Emancipation
items totaling more than $11,000.
    “Our youth, especially those who are aging
out of foster care, need a supportive hand to
become productive, healthy and happy adults,”
said Commission President Mary Jo Kilroy.
“Commissioners are proud to continue building
on our initiative to send our students off to
college with the appropriate resources and
ready to learn.”
    Of the 72 young people under agency
care who graduated from high school this
year, 64% are starting college this fall.
                                                  The Commissioners and business leaders honored 22 college-bound youth at Easton Town Center.
They will attend a variety of colleges and
universities, including Columbus State,           Commissioner Marilyn Brown added that            Department provides ongoing services to
Central State, Wright State, Toledo, Ohio         the event is only possible because of the        willing youth who have aged out of the
Dominican, Spelman, Ohio State, North             generosity of the community. “From the           foster care system. Staff members work
Central, Cincinnati, Rio Grande, Hocking,         wonderful donations for school clothing to the   with them to access funds that will pay for
DeVry and Ohio University.                        commitment to assist with the cost of books to   some college expenses and computers, and
    Community partners contributed gift           the successful event at Easton … all of these    help them assemble the items they need for
cards, money for college books, food and          things play an important part in preparing       dorm life. In addition, Children Services
other items to help the college-bound             these talented students for the classroom this   matches many of the youth with adult
students get off to a good start. These           fall,” she said.                                 mentors who offer guidance and support
partners include: The LimitedBrands, The              “We are so proud of the growing number of    throughout their college careers. Those
Easton Community Foundation, The                  our kids who are continuing their education      interested in becoming college-bound
Columbus Dispatch, Schottenstein Value            beyond high school,” said Eric Fenner,           mentors can call 275-2690.
                                                  executive director of Franklin County

                                                 Therapeutic Arts Program presents
                                                                 My Story
                                              October 22 - 7-9 p.m.
                               Vern Riffe Center, Capital Theatre - 77 S. High Street
                                   An entertaining free event open to the public.
 My Story is a show created and performed by Children Services youth who participate in Children Services’ Therapeutic
 Arts Program (TAP). It will include singing, dancing, miming, drama, poetry and rap. This dramatic presentation allows
 agency youth to express themselves in a creative manner and to increase public awareness about the issues affecting youth
 in our community. The youth will also receive awards and recognition for their personal growth and accomplishments
 throughout the year. Despite difficult life experiences many of the TAP youth have challenged themselves to dream and set
 high goals. They are proud of their accomplishments through adversity. Everyone is invited and welcome. Join TAP youth
 as they display their artistic talents and as they are honored for their accomplishments. Please come and show your support
 for the TAP youth. For more information, call 221-4304.

                                Franklin County Children Services                  •     October 2007                                            3
Kids Have Loads of Fun During
Children’s Day Event at COSI
by Pam Prosser

K    inship caregiver Rebekah Cox’s
     grandchildren danced to the music of
Arnett Howard and proudly wore their                                                               As children entered COSI they were
balloon hats. Cox recently brought her                                                         surrounded by music, costumed
grandchildren to COSI for Franklin County                                                      characters, prizes and activities. Local
Children Services’ special Children’s Day                                                      musician Arnett Howard entertained a
celebration. “This is such a wonderful event,”                                                 lively group of youngsters; Ray Pauken
said Cox. “We are having so much fun and the                                                   performed an old-fashioned banjo
music is great. We never would have been able to                                               sing-a-long; and Celeste Friedman sang
come here if it wasn’t for this free opportunity.”                                             children’s songs and played the keyboard.
   Franklin County Children Services recently                                                  Youth entertainment included a
teamed up with COSI Columbus for a                                                             performance from the Children Services
Children’s Day celebration. With support from Kinship caregiver Rebekah Cox and her            Therapeutic Arts Program. Clowns Jeannie
Kroger, White Castle and Nationwide, many grandchildren enjoyed the Children’s Day event. and Melody offered face painting and
children received free admission to COSI on                           balloon sculptures. The support of media sponsor 92.3 WCOL,
Sunday, September 23.                                                 added significantly to the success of Children’s Day.
                                                          This           Children Services provides help to more than 28,000 abused,
                                                       year, more neglected and dependent children in Franklin County each year.
                                                       than           The agency’s vision is that every child will have a happy and
                                                       1,745          secure childhood and many happy memories as they grow up to be
                                                       children       productive
                                                       and their      adults.
                                                       families       Children
                                                       were in        Services
                                                       atten-         holds this
                                                       dance,         annual
                                                       with           Children’s
                                                       Children’s Day event
                                                       Day            to give all
                                                       coupons        children
used by 1,079. Many children under Children Services’ care and        the oppor-
community children thoroughly enjoyed the special entertainment       tunity to
and activities in the atrium.                                         enjoy

Community Forums                                                        Each panelist spoke eloquently and passionately about their
                                                                     role in protecting children. All agreed that adults must lead by
   Protecting Children by Strengthening Families was the theme of    example, mentor and encourage youth toward positive activities
a recent community forum sponsored by the Community                  that prepare them for bright futures. A common message was
Relations Commission of the City of Columbus.                        that the entire community is responsible for helping to raise the
   The five distinguished panelists that weighed in on the theme     next generation of citizens and leaders.
were: Eric Fenner, executive director of Franklin County                The focus on child protection was one of working with
Children Services; Dr. Gene Harris, superintendent of Columbus       families to enable them to safely and independently raise their
City Schools; Herb Henderson, administrator for Juvenile Court;      children. This can be done through collaboration in providing
Michelle Mills, chief executive officer of St. Stephen’s             services and a support system for children and families. All
Community House; Karen Days, executive director of the               panelists committed themselves to working collectively to make
Coalition Against Family Violence; and Noel Williams, president      sure that the community’s children are safe and their families
of the Columbus Chapter of the NAACP       .                         strong.

4                                   Franklin County Children Services              • October 2007
Agency Raises Funds for UNCF Scholarships
by Steve Jones
The United Negro College Fund is well known for its
motto, “A mind is a terrible thing to waste.” And because
Franklin County Children Services supports higher
education for youth, the agency has participated in the
UNCF Walk-A-Thon for the past eight years. In addi-
tion to the donations collected from the Walk-A-Thon,
the agency has two additional fundraisers for UNCF.
An agency-wide bake sale and the Soul Food Jazz
Luncheon featured live jazz music, led by Children
Services employee Rika Fanning. Smooth jazz, good
food and fabulous door prizes make for a wonderful way
to spend a lunch hour. Half of all the proceeds raised go
to the Alvin Hadley College Scholarship, which benefits
college-bound youth served by the agency. The recent
UNCF Walk-A-Thon was a huge success and Children
Services was well represented. Pledges are still coming
in and the agency is expecting to achieve record donations.   Agency employee Rika Fanning (center), with band members Mark Lomax
                                                              (left) and L. G. Scott (right), performed at the Soul Food Jazz Luncheon.

  Kinship Support
                                                  School Supplies Donated to Agency Kids
  Groups                                          Thanks to the generosity of community partners, hundreds of children in
  Kinship caregivers who have                     Franklin County Children Services’ kinship program started the school
  embraced their family members’                  year well equipped with everything ranging from pens and rulers to book
  children need to know that there are            bags and notebooks. The Tom Fennessy Back to School Project donated
  resources available to help them. To            550 book bags loaded with supplies along with hundreds of notebooks.
  assist in this effort, Franklin County          The Institute of Real Estate
  Children Services recruitment depart-           Management, Chapter 42 also
  ment coordinates quarterly support              delivered a van full of book
  groups to provide families with                 bags and a sundry array of
  information about community                     school supplies. Additional
  resources as well as offer the care-            items were donated by one of
  givers an outlet to share concerns with         the ministries at Oakley Full
  each other. While the adults are                Gospel Church. The outpour-
  meeting, separate groups are held for           ing of support was so gener-
  teens living in kinship homes. The              ous that school items were
  October meeting featured motivation-            also shared with children in
  al speaker and former foster child              the agency’s Simba mentoring
  Cedric Riley, who shared his story              program as well as those in
  with the youth and encouraged them              foster homes. “Being able to
  to strive for success. The caregivers           receive this kind of help brought
  received information about income               some of the families to tears,”
  tax services offered by Firstlink, legal        said kinship specialist Frieda Jay Zollars (left) and Beth VanderPol (right)
  services available through Legal Aide,          McKarn. “So many of them           from the Institute of Real Estate Management
  and encouraging words from another              want to make sure all of the chil- Chapter 42 delivered school supplies to
  kinship provider. For kinship support           dren’s needs are met, but some- Children Services employee Marsha Holmes.
  group information, call 341-6175.               times it’s just hard financially.”

                           Franklin County Children Services                  •      October 2007                                         5
                                Volunteer Makes a
                                Difference for Youth
                                by Vickie Dengg                                                          for Kimberly. The
    New Volunteers
                                L    ea Maokhamphiou                                                     two have become
                                     understands dealing                                                 very close and both
                                with life’s adversities.                                                 look forward to their
       Alicia Alcamo            At the age of 4 she                                                      time together. They
       Brynne Bowers            arrived in the United                                                    enjoy a variety of
        Adam Cloud              States from Loas. In                                                     activities, including
        Poorvi Dalal            addition to learning a                                                   skating, shopping,
                                new language and                                                         baking, playing at
       Kristin Dillard
                                culture, she struggled                                                   parks, going out to
       Rachel Gibson            to be accepted by other                                                  eat, and pampering
       Melissa Green            children. These child-                                                   themselves at home
         Abby Hart              hood experiences gave                                                    doing facials and
       Gail Kauffman            Maokhamphiou a                                                           manicures. They also
                                wonderful sensitivity                                                    have conversations
      Maggie Mehling                                     Kimberly and her friendship volunteer Lea
                                and fostered her desire Maokhamphiou with Sam.                           on the importance of
        Kavita Patel            to help others. She                                                      school and focusing
         Mary Scott             called Franklin County Children Services         energy in positive directions.
        Shirali Shah            in March of 2004 because she wanted to               Kimberly’s home life is now stable, but
        Paige Smith             volunteer with a child.                          she continues to appreciate the impor-
      Mary Williamson               Maokhamphiou has been matched with tance of having a mentor in her life.
                                Kimberly, a vibrant 12-year-old, for the         Maokhamphiou, now the mother of
                                past three years. When Kimberly first            1-year-old Sam, wants to continue to be
                                became involved with the agency’s                there for Kimberly. “I always want to be a
                                Friendship Volunteer program her home            part of her life. I know that the stability in
                                life was not ideal. As one of five children, my life has been good for her,” says
      Volunteer                 she needed some positive individual              Maokhamphiou. “I like it when she tells
                                                                                 people we are sisters.” For more
                                attention from a caring adult.
     Recognition                    Maokhamphiou was the perfect match           information about becoming a friendship
                                                                                 volunteer, call 275-2690.

         5 Years
       Luann Albert
      Rose Cacioppo
                                New Volunteer & Holiday Wish Director
                                   Megan Stevens is the new director of Franklin
      Cindy Ferguson            County Children Services’ Volunteer Services and Child
      Annette Franks            Enrichment Department. She comes to this position
       Kelly Jackson            with more than 17 years of experience at Children
       Mark Knisely             Services.
      Rupinder Singh               She has worked at the agency’s Intake office, where
                                she conducted sexual abuse investigations, and later with
      Brandi Walker             foster and adoptive families. Stevens joined the
                                Recruitment Department in 2001 where she did child
         10 Years               specific adoption and foster care recruitment, as well as
        Ruth Cavin              community relations work. She is a licensed social
       Dawn Steward             worker and has her master’s degree in public policy and
      Gulnar Surveyor              Stevens looks forward to continuing the work of the Volunteer Department by
                                increasing the number of volunteers matched with agency children and youth. She plans
                                to add programs that will help meet children’s needs and the interests of volunteers, and
                                will continue the success of the Holiday Wish program.

6                        Franklin County Children Services            •    October 2007
Agency Celebrates National Family Week
by Daryle Cobb                                                           The Alliance

N    ational Family Week, held during the week of Thanksgiving,       for Children
     honors the connections that support and strengthen               and Families, a
families. The theme, Connections Count, embraces the premise          non-profit
that children’s lives are better when their families are strong.      membership
Family strength comes from the communities that connect them          association
to economic opportunities, social networks and services.              representing
   Franklin County Children Services is partnering with St.           child-and
Stephen’s Community House, The Neighborhood House, Central            family-serving
Community House, South Side Settlement, and Gladden                   organizations in
Community House to plan special activities for the Columbus           the United
area. The organizations will come together for one large commu-       States and
nity celebration and then each site will host its own event.          Canada, has
   This is the agency’s first year participating in National Family   directed
Week, which will feature a special celebration on November 19th       National Family
from 1 – 4 p.m. at 855 West Mound Street. Lisa Lambert,               Week efforts for
Children Services director of the Family-To-Family Program, feels     more than 30
                                                                      years. National
this will be a historic event for Children Services and the
community. “This is a wonderful opportunity to honor families who     Family Week is                Family Week
worked hard to restore their families and community leaders who       supported by The
worked to strengthen families.” Each of the settlement sites will     Annie E. Casey
acknowledge one family and one community leader at this event.        Foundation.           November 18-24, 2007

Retirees                                      supervisor and caseworker in the open
                                              case investigation unit. His last assign-
                                                                                            position of interim director of the
                                                                                            Performance Improvement Department,
   Beverly Ross Carter came to Children       ment was in the Adoptions Department.         She will be remembered for her steadfast
Services in 1978 as a child care worker.      Ishizuka is a licensed independent social     passion for the child welfare profession.
She was promoted to activity therapist at     worker and holds a master’s degree in            Linda Walters began her service with
East Region in 1987 and worked in the         counseling and psychology. He became a        Children Services in 1982 as technical
Therapeutic Arts Program. Her last            certified adoption assessor, a trained        typist and as secretary to the Information
assignment was with the Foster/Adoption       mediator and racism study circle facilita-    Systems and Contract Management
Preparation and Resource Department in        tor. He will be remembered as being a         Department. In 1994, she was promoted
2002. Ross’s positive outlook and “happy      strong child advocate; dedicated to the       to administrative secretary, serving the
to be here” attitude helped newly arrived     children and families he served.              chief financial officer, and later to the
youth adjust to a cottage program setting.        Joy Maurer began her career at the        directors of Employee Relations and
She assisted youth in learning daily living   agency as a child welfare caseworker I in     Placement Service Division. Walters
and personal skills and helped to improve     1973. She progressed in her profession        showed her commitment and concern for
and enhance the delivery of recreation        from child welfare caseworker II and III to   the excellence of services operations, and
and activity services. She supported          child welfare casework supervisor in Foster   in 1988 received honorable mention to
parents in their efforts to change and her    Care, along with East and South Regions.      employee of the year. Walters has
peers by serving on the supportive work       Staff supervised by Maurer refer to her as    provided secretarial support during labor
environment and safety committees.            patient, yet intolerant of mediocrity, a      negotiations, clerical support to the
    Arnie Ishizuka began his service to       model of professionalism and mutual           Citizens Advisory Council, clerical support
Children Services in 1977 as a caseworker     respect, and a teacher with insight who       to the agency’s annual Child Abuse
in an ongoing protective services unit. He    motivated clients to do their best. In        Prevention Breakfast and backup support
was promoted to a caseworker III (and         2003, Maurer moved to the Quality             to the executive director’s secretary.
later to supervisor) in an unruly youth       Assurance Department and helped shape         Walters will be remembered for her
unit. Ishizuka transferred to Intake as a     the agency’s peer review and quality assur-   exceptional contributions to Children
screening unit supervisor and Intake          ance processes. In 2007, she accepted the     Services and her agency colleagues.

                              Franklin County Children Services              •    October 2007                                     7
     Adoptable Children Waiting for Homes
     Wendy’s Wonderful Kids helps find adoptive homes
     by Jason DeBord and Felicia Newell                                         Daniel enjoys playing basketball and works hard in

     T    hirteen-year-old Shanen is a fun                                      school. He would benefit from having a patient family
          loving and energetic young man                                        who could assist him in academic areas that challenge
     who is hoping to find an adoptive                                          him. Daniel has dreams of becoming a police officer.
     family. He loves playing basketball and                                       Wendy’s Wonderful Kids, a program of the Dave
     dreams of one day playing for the NBA.                                                                      Thomas Foundation
     He spends his free time listening to                                                                        for Adoption, partners
     music, watching television, goofing off                                                                     a major corporation
     with his foster siblings, and playing                                                                       and a national
     video games. Shanen would benefit                                                                           foundation to help
     from a strong two-parent home with an                                                                       place foster children
     active family who enjoys being outside. Shanen, 13, is hoping to find an                                    in permanent homes.
        Daniel is a caring and                adoptive family.
                                                                                                                 For more information
     mild-mannered 14-year-old who would                                                                         on how to adopt
     love to have a family of his own. Daniel is shy at first, but soon                                          either of these boys or
     lights up the room with his infectious laugh. Daniel describes                                              any other waiting
     his ideal home as having two parents with brothers or sisters.                                              child, call 341-6176.
     He is gentle and playful with small children and likes animals.            Daniel, 14, would like a family to call
                                                                                his own.

                                                                                        Address Corrections: 614/275-2523
                                                                                                  Printed on recycled paper

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  PERMIT #1917                                                                                       855 W. Mound St. Columbus, OH 43223
   COLUMBUS, OH                                                                                      Franklin County Children Services
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