For more than 26 years, our center has served hundreds of children from hard places each year. Our center has continued to evolve and develop to meet the growing and changing needs of our community’s most vulnerable children. In the past two years, the number of children referred to our Children’s Advocacy Center has more than doubled. Over the past 3 years, the number of children served by our CASA program has more than doubled too.
As we think and dream about the future, we know there is a need for a larger facility….one where we have room for all of our staff and services, as well as room to co-locate with our multidisciplinary team members from CPS, law enforcement, prosecution, medical and mental health. As the population of our community grows, we anticipate that the number of children we will be called upon to serve will also continue to grow.
In 2017, we formed a Facility Task Force that started the process of finding our new home. This team of board, staff and community members toured several other CASA and Children’s Advocacy Centers in the north Texas area to learn what features we would want in our new place. Preliminary drawings for our new place have been drafted up, taking into account all we learned and dream about. Our team has been actively checking out existing buildings and looking for land that would be suitable for our new place. We made several asks and offers over the last two years, but nothing worked out. Now, we see that it was a blessing that none of other other land deals came to fruition.
In December 2019, we received a wonderful donation of land from Roy and Jan Reimer. The land is about 8 acres in all, at the corner of Lee and Albert Broadfoot in Bonham. It’s just south of the old golf course and east of the Bonham High School baseball field. It’s a great location, near two schools and centrally located.
Next steps are to find an architect, develop construction plans for the new place, create a budget and raise the funds needed.
Your donation will be used build our new facility. With your gift, we will be ready to meet the challenges that lie ahead so that kids from hard places will always have a safe place and someone on their side to help them as they heal and grow.
Goals for our new facility:
• Waiting Areas – expanded and separate waiting areas to improve safety, comfort and confidentiality
• Office Space – increased office space for additional staff to keep up with the growing needs of victims and our community
• Co-location with Multidisciplinary Team – increased office space to allow for co-location with CPS, law enforcement, prosecution and medical professionals
• Medical Exam Room – addition of a medical exam room so victims of physical and sexual abuse will no longer have to travel out of county for non-acute specialized medical exams. (Acute exams, which are needed when the last known abuse happened in less than 120 hours, will still be referred to hospitals in neighboring counties that have specially trained medical personnel.)
• Conference Rooms – larger conference room and additional smaller conference rooms for the multiple trainings and meetings held at our center as well as for other uses such as our annual Christmas and School Supply Drives.
• Therapy Rooms – increased number of rooms designated and designed for specialized trauma focused therapy for victims and their protective family members.
• Rainbow Room – larger room to hold new clothing, diapers, shoes and other items needed by children and families and adjustable shelving and hanging racks to better adapt to the fluctuating inventory in our room.
• Outdoor Space – our current center has no usable outdoor space; the new facility will have secured space designed for several purposes, including therapy for children and families, play and break time for our facility dog Render and stress-relieving and team building time for the staff, volunteers and partner agency professionals
• Parking – there will be ample parking for all who come to the center, including those who are disabled. There will be separate, secured parking area for the staff and professionals who regularly work at the center.
• Natural Lighting – greatly increased amount of natural lighting
• Storage – much more storage space planned
• Safety, Security and Confidentiality – improved building design and technology to greatly improve safety, security and confidentiality
• Future growth – the building will be designed with future growth in mind, so that additional offices or meeting rooms can simply be added on to the existing building when needed. In addition, new space will be designed and equipped so that spaces can more easily be re-purposed in the future as needs change.
Donate for Dana’s Room
Donate for John and Joanne Richards Room
Check out our video below from our Facebook Live on January 2, 2020 to announce the location of our new facility!