Every year, almost 700,000 children suffer abuse or neglect in the US (according to the National Children’s Alliance) and local women’s clubs affiliated with the NJ State Federation of Women’s Clubs (NJSFWC), such as the Franklin Woman’s Club, want to help them through a partnership with CASA of NJ (Court Appointed Special Advocates) (https://www.casaofnj.org).
“If you were a child who experienced abuse or neglect, you would be facing a life likely defined by physical, psychological or emotional trauma and their long-term consequences. Chances are, by the time you turn 21, you will have spent two years or more in a constant state of toxic stress while you waited to go home, be adopted or simply see what happens next. You will have moved three times, had several caseworkers and caregivers, and attended nine different schools. You are 900 percent more likely to be involved in criminal activities. And if you never find a permanent home and age out of the child welfare system altogether, you have a 20 percent chance of being homeless before age 19.” (Excerpts from: http://nc.casaforchildren.org/files/public/site/Communications/NCASA-Brochure-2018.pdf)
Grim scenarios and statistics such as these moved the NJSFWC (www.njsfwc.org) to create a special two-year statewide project (2018-2020) to support CASA of NJ, in which over 185 of NJ’s Woman’s Clubs will organize events and initiatives to help ease the traumatic transitions faced by innocent victims of child abuse and neglect. In all 21 counties, CASA of NJ is approved by state statute to advocate for abused and neglected children in Family Court thereby giving them “a voice to ensure their safety and well-being, and ultimately, their placement in nurturing, permanent homes with loving families.” Last year approximately 1,900 specially trained NJ CASA volunteer advocates worked with 3,866 children in foster care.
The challenge is that CASA’s budget only covers 50% of their expenses. The other half needs to come from donations and initiatives such as those being organized by the Franklin Women’s Club.
According to www.childhelp.org, a report of child abuse is made every 10 seconds. If you want to make a difference in the life of a child, please consider helping in one or more of the ways listed below:
- A new duffle bag and/or supplies listed below to be packed in each bag and given to children who must be removed from unsafe homes:
- Travel size personal hygiene supplies
- Activity supplies: (i.e., coloring books, crayons, school supplies, etc.)
- Yarn in any color;
- Knitted or crocheted scarves, gloves or hats for infants, toddlers and older children;
- Knitted, crocheted or quilted blankets in any of the following sizes: Infant: (36 X36), Toddler (42 X 48) or Older Children (48 X 60);
- A fleece blanket with crocheted edges (Visit: www.franklinwomansclub.com for directions or call (732) 844 – 9002);
- Call (732) 844-9002 regarding item contributions and to arrange for donation pick up.
Or make a monetary donation used to buy gift cards for children’s birthdays and holidays. Checks payable to: Franklin Woman’s Club, indicate “CASA” in the subject line of your check. Mail to: Franklin Woman's Club, PO Box 5793, Somerset, NJ 08875.
The Franklin Woman’s Club is part of the General and New Jersey State Federations of Women's Clubs. The General Federation of Women’s Clubs is a unifying force, bringing together local women’s clubs, whose members are dedicated to strengthening their communities and enhancing the lives of others through volunteer service. With nearly 80,000 members in affiliated clubs in every state and more than a dozen countries, GFWC members are community leaders who work locally to create global change by supporting the arts, preserving natural resources, advancing education, promoting healthy lifestyles, encouraging civic involvement, and working toward world peace and understanding. The New Jersey State Federation of Woman’s Clubs is the largest women’s volunteer organization in New Jersey.
Franklin Woman’s Club meetings are held at Franklin High School, 500 Elizabeth Avenue, Somerset, on the 2nd Tuesday of the Month (7pm) between September and May with special meetings held at alternate locations. In addition to community initiatives, the Franklin Woman’s Club also features frequent social and educational events for enrichment and fun. Women interested in learning more about the club and/or becoming a member may visit www.franklinwomansclub.com or can email inquiries to: firstname.lastname@example.org. To make monetary donations to support the club’s general philanthropic fund, send a check made payable to the Franklin Woman’s Club, indicating General Charities in the subject line of your check. Mail to: Franklin Woman's Club, PO Box 5793, Somerset, NJ 08875.
To follow the club’s activities on Facebook, visit: http://www.facebook.com/franklinwomansclub.