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NOVEMBER 2019
Volume 1 | Issue 1
 
A MESSAGE FROM THE EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR
For over 28 years, Children's Advocacy Center of Greater West Texas, Inc. (CAC) has faithfully served the children and families in our community. Our long-standing history of quality services is a tribute to our partners and supporters who have believed in our efforts as we have grown into the unique umbrella organization we are today. As we approach 2020, we anticipate many exciting opportunities for innovation and continued growth. It is our hope that this newsletter will keep you informed and up to date on what’s going on at CAC and with children in our community.   
 
- Heather Ward
OUR SERVICES
The mission of Children’s Advocacy Center of Greater West Texas, Inc. (CAC) is to ensure that every child in our community has a safe and nurturing home. CAC acts as an independent, neutral advocate for children and families in our community through our many services. 
 
CAC provides services to children and families through four main programs: Hope House, Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA), Family Enrichment Services (FES), and Outreach & Awareness.
HOPE HOUSE
Hope House is a safe place for children and families to visit after an outcry of abuse. This program provides free services to victims of child abuse and neglect, including forensic interviews, case coordination, and therapy services. With a child-centered approach, Hope House acts quickly and thoroughly alongside Hope House Partners, such as Child Protective Services (CPS) Special Investigators, San Angelo Police Department Child Crimes Investigators, and Homeland Security. Hope House ensures every child receives the hope, healing, and life-changing services they so rightly deserve.
CASA
When home is no longer safe and a child enters the foster care system, a judge may appoint a Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA). CASA Volunteers speak for the best interests of abused or neglected children whose home will be determined by a court of law. The CASA Volunteer stands beside the child throughout their journey to provide hope and help guide the child to a safe and permanent home.
FAMILY ENRICHMENT SERVICES
Family Enrichment Services (FES) provides prevention services to build stronger families through four free programs.

Circle of Parents is a weekly support group led by trained facilitators and parent leaders. Anyone in a care-giving role can discuss the successes and challenges of raising children and exchange ideas and resources. A children's group is offered simultaneous to the adult meeting.


Counseling Services offers both individual and group counseling services to children and families in our community. Our counseling staff work closely with clients to determine an individualized treatment plan.

Parents as Teachers is a home visitation program that enables parents to become their child's first and best teacher. This program is for children prenatal - five years of age. The program includes child development and health screenings, referrals to community resources, and a monthly fun family event. 

Parent Mentor Program is for any guardian seeking parenting tips or guidance. This program provides parent education, resource coordination, and case management. Participating families receive  a tailored plan to identify and build upon strengths.
OUTREACH & AWARENESS
Outreach & Awareness focuses on engaging and educating the community on child abuse and how to prevent it. 

Child & Family Well-being Initiative is a coalition comprised of agencies, business leaders, churches, and other community residents steadfast in the mission of building a unified community to strengthen families.

Child Fatality Review Team seeks to decrease and understand child fatalities in a 15-county region. This team reviews all child deaths, regardless of cause, and strives to identify gaps in services to protect children in the future.

Community Education offers free child-centered trainings. Recognizing & Reporting Child Abuse Training educates community members by providing the tools to recognize signs of child abuse, proper reporting protocol, and available community resources. This training is offered in-person and online at no charge to any school, individual, or group.

Volunteer Coordination consists of outreach and engagement of the communities we serve, including recruitment and retention of volunteers.
BOARD OF DIRECTORS 2019-2020
Rick Mantooth, President
Michelle Perkey, Treasurer/Finance Chair
Jeff Curry, Past President
Mike Hennings, Member At Large
Cara Barker
Pam Bradshaw
Tanner Bryant
Crystin Darby
Val Frank
Leann Hubert-Forbes
Fred Key
Ashley Knight
Dr. Robert LeGrand
Susan Looka
Isaac Lopez
Sharanda El-Masri, Vice President
Colleen Haddad, Secretary
Diane Wilson, Fundraising Chair
Dennis McGuire
Derek McIntyre
Patricia Mertz
Shelley New
James Skinner
Corey Speck
Monty Stanley
Patty Stokes
Carol Whitehead
Shane Wilson
Sheila Velarde
NEW STAFF MEMBERS
MAEGAN HARD
PARENT EDUCATOR
Maegan has made San Angelo, Texas her home since she was 10 years old. She attended Angelo State University and majored in criminal justice. Originally a CPS Investigator, Maegan worked closely with the Hope House program. She has a heart for strengthening families, and spends her days supporting parents and children through CAC’s Parents as Teachers program. Maegan loves being able to encourage and support parents by investing her passions and skills in the work of CAC. When she’s not in the office, you can find her spending quality time with her son, watching him compete in football, baseball, gymnastics, or basketball, or baking yummy desserts in her kitchen.
MELODY TAIT
FAMILY ADVOCATE
Originally from Caro, Michigan, Melody made her way to San Angelo for college, where she attended Angelo State University. While working at Adult Probation, Melody heard about CAC. She was passionate about helping victims, and wanted to use her gifts to advocate for others. Melody loves getting to know and form relationships with the children that come through Hope House’s doors, even if for just a short time. She is passionate about doing anything she can to make the difficult process easier for these children. Melody can often be found spending time with her children, lifting weights, or playing video games.
KALIH MARTINEZ
CASA CASE MANAGER
Kalih was a former CAC employee and joined our staff again in September 2019.
Welcome back!


 
A CENTER FOR CHILDREN & FAMILIES
On May 31, 2019, CAC officially purchased the property located at 3515 S. Bryant Blvd and the 1.7 acres of land which sits adjacent to the existing building. The building, formerly Town & Country Food Stores Headquarters, will be slightly renovated to house our Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA) program, Family Enrichment Services program, Resource Center, Marketing, Education Coordination, Volunteer Coordination, and Administrative offices. A second building will be constructed on the 1.7 acre lot that will house our Hope House program along with community partners San Angelo Police Department, Child Protective Services, Shannon Medical Component, and therapy services. Phase One (obtaining properties) of the $6.9 million dollar campaign was underwritten by Town & Country Food Stores partners Steve & Pollyanna Stephens, Devin & Liz Bates, Randy & Susan Brooks, Lloyd & Sheri Norris, and Alvin & Shelley New. Phase Two (new construction) is currently on-going to complete the capital campaign. Estimated construction start date is early 2020. For more information on giving or for further updates, please contact CAC. 
DONATE NOW
WOMEN OF HOPE
First Lady of Texas, Cecilia Abbott
Women of Hope was established earlier this year as CAC’s ambassadors for children in the Concho Valley through their determination to increase community awareness, promote child abuse prevention efforts, and financially strengthen the organization. Throughout their first year, Women of Hope have met quarterly and showed their appreciation for Phase One Donors for our Capital Campaign, heard more about our mission through personal testimony from a CASA Volunteer, and, recently, identified a candidate for a Safe Space Project. They will be completing this project, along with the Hope House team, on Wednesday, November 13.

Safe Space Projects are conducted when a child’s case has been closed and the room in their home is remodeled to hopefully remove any memories of the traumatic experience they endured during their abuse. This space becomes a new space for them and hopefully the next chapter following their abuse can begin in a more positive way.

In addition to the support provided by the members of Women of Hope, our honorary member, Cecilia Abbott, First Lady of Texas, presented Women of Hope a $5,000 contribution towards projects conducted through Women of Hope. More great things are to come from this group who care deeply about the mission of CAC. For more information on Women of Hope or how to get involved, contact Justin at 653-HOPE.  
 VOLUNTEER OPPORTUNITIES
      Become a CASA Volunteer

      Host a Recognizing and Reporting Child Abuse Training for your
             school, church, or group

       Sponsor a child for Christmas

      Become a trained facilitator for Circle of Parents

      Raise awareness, promote prevention, and financially strengthen CAC
             by becoming a Woman of Hope
CHAMPIONS ADVOCATING 4 CHILDREN GOLF CLASSIC
Over 100 people attended the 5th Annual Champions Advocating 4 Children Golf Classic on Monday, September 16, 2019, in support of Children’s Advocacy Center of Greater West Texas, Inc. (CAC). This annual fundraising event is hosted by Tres Amigos Convenience Stores and all proceeds go to CAC. The golf tournament and silent auction, which took place at San Angelo Country Club, raised a total of $46,000, making it a very successful event for CAC. 
 
The golf tournament included 27 teams and over ten raffle prizes, ranging from a signed shirt by world champion tie-down roper Shane Hanchey, a C-130 supercharged golf bag from Forbes Promotions, and five tickets to the Dallas Cowboys vs. Minnesota Vikings game. Sponsors of the event included Title Sponsor Tres Amigos Convenience Stores, Silver Sponsors Snider IT, Core-Mark, and Delek US, Bronze Sponsors AB Distribution, Angelo Archives, Basil & Sharanda El-Masri, Cal-Tech, Clark Pfluger, CFA, Coca-Cola Southwest Beverages, Orion Food Systems, Penta Petro, Stadium Oaks, and Swole Properties, and Lunch Sponsor EE&G, Inc. 
 
"We are grateful for Mike Hennings and Tres Amigos Convenience Stores for their steadfast support of CAC. Through community support, CAC has been able to have a tremendous impact on children in our community. We are passionate about meeting children and families where they are and working hard to ensure all children receive the help they deserve," says Heather Ward.

 
CASA VOLUNTEER HIGHLIGHT
It is an honor for CAC to be entrusted with recruiting, training, and retaining CASA Volunteers for the 13-county region of the Concho Valley. Over the years, we have had phenomenal CASA Volunteers that should be introduced to the community. This edition, meet Dori Wegner.

Dori has a genuine kind-hearted spirit about her. She is a fighter, advocating for children throughout the entirety of a case and ensuring their best interests are kept at focus. All CASA cases are difficult in their own way, but Dori seems to get the ones that are really difficult for even the most experienced CASA Volunteer, and yet she never waivers. She is strong and a pillar of light for not only the children, but others that are also working to ensure a positive outcome is achieved. Dori exemplifies what being a CASA is all about!


DORI WEGNER
 
My husband and I live out in the country and have dogs, cats, potbelly pigs, horses, chickens, goats, and cows. During my free time, I like to spend quality time with friends and family.

I have been a CASA Volunteer for over three years. I found out about the need for CASA volunteers through watching Dr. Phil and was immediately intrigued as I love children and helping others. After discussing it with my mom who was a court reporter for many years, I decided to become a CASA Volunteer. Now, when I go to court to advocate for my CASA kids, I always think about my mom and how she believed in me.

 
COMMUNITY INVOLVEMENT
Children's Advocacy Center of Greater West Texas, Inc. (CAC) would like to thank Dr. Jason Wall, D.D.S., P.A. for his incredible kindness, compassion, and support.

Recently, CASA was working with a child who needed extensive dental work. Dr. Wall and his wonderful staff stepped up to help this child. They have made a huge contribution to the future of this child. 

Giving hearts like those of Dr. Wall and his staff help contribute to the healing and recovery of the many children receiving services and advocacy through CAC. Thank you Dr. Wall and staff for going above and beyond in making a difference in the lives of children in our community. 
EVENTS
CASA Volunteer Luncheon
Thursday, November 21 | 12:00-1:00 PM
Recognizing and Reporting
Child Abuse Training

Thursday, January 30 | 6:00-7:30 PM
Christmas for Kids
December 2019
CASA Volunteer Training
January 6-15, 2020 (Mondays & Wednesdays)
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CHILDREN'S ADVOCACY CENTER OF GREATER WEST TEXAS, INC.

P.O. Box 5145 | San Angelo, TX 76902
325-653-HOPE
cacgreaterwtx.org

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Children's Advocacy Center of Greater West Texas, Inc. · 317 Koberlin Street · San Angelo, TX 76903-3611 · USA

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