WARREN, NJ – The call for help went out in July and the Watchung Hills Community responded. Court Appointed Special Advocates of Somerset, Hunterdon and Warren Counties (CASA SHaW), through their partnership with Watchung Hills Regional High School, provided approximately 100 backpacks to give to foster children before the start of the school year. Within the backpacks, children found pencils, pens, notebooks, erasers, glue, rulers, markers, and other back-to-school supplies – all of the material things needed for a great school year.
“These kids have been separated from their families - through no fault of their own – and aren’t thinking about the pencils, crayons and markers they will need for their classes in school,” said Tracey Heisler, Executive Director of CASA SHaW. “We are grateful for the partnership with Watchung Hills Regional High School that helped dozens of abused and neglected children in our community prepare for the new school year. No child should have to go to school without a backpack and the supplies needed to succeed. These generous and thoughtful donations take an added burden off of them, and it reminds the kids that they are not forgotten.”
CASA SHaW serves 75% of foster children, toddlers to teenagers, in the three counties it represents. The organization receives backpack and school supply donations annually for the children they serve from various community organizations. This year, Watchung Hills Regional High School stepped up to the plate and helped make the start of the school year special for many children.
WHRHS Superintendent Elizabeth Jewett said, “Our district leadership team thought it would be meaningful to engage, as a group, in giving back to an organization as part of our summer Leadership Retreat on August 19. After considering a few options, we thought that we could help to collect and assemble backpacks of school supplies for children in foster care.”
CASA of Somerset, Hunterdon, and Warren Counties is part of a statewide network of community-based, non-profit programs that recruit, screen, train and supervise volunteers to “Speak Up for a Child” removed from home due to abuse or neglect. CASA is the only program in New Jersey that uses trained volunteers to work one-on-one with children, ensuring that each one gets the services needed and achieves permanency in a safe, nurturing home. To find a local CASA program in your county, visit www.casaofnj.org.
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