Great Gatsby! Great Night!

servers 2018

Justice Is Served – Honorable servers who served up dinner for guests at the Justice Is Served fundraiser for the Fannin County Children’s Center included (front row, from left)  Fannin County Clerk Tammy Biggars, Adult Probation Chief Debra Roberts, 336th District Judge Lauri Blake, Fannin County District Clerk Nancy Young, Whitewright ISD Police Chief Judy Sims, (back row, from left) Juvenile Probation Chief Brandon Caffee, Fannin County Judge Spanky Carter, Justice of the Peace, Pct 2 Bob Clemons, Texas State Senator Bob Hall, Trenton Police Chief William Robertson, Honey Grove Police Chief Leigh Dixon, Justice of the Peace, Pct 3 Kenneth Karl, County Court at Law Judge Charles Butler, Fannin County Criminal District Attorney Richard Glaser and Fannin County Sheriff Mark Johnson.

Early estimates are that the 14th Annual “Justice Is Served” fundraiser raised at least $65,000 for the Fannin County Children’s Center. This amount tops the previous best of $55,000 from last year. In addition, attendance was the largest ever, with nearly 500 in attendance at the dinner and auction at the Complex in Bonham.

This year’s theme was The Great Gatsby. Many guests were wearing flapper dresses, pearl necklaces, feathered headbands, fedora hats and bow ties. State Senator Bob Hall, District Judge Lauri Blake, Fannin County Judge Spanky Carter, Fannin County Sheriff Mark Johnson and several local officials of the justice system served up dinner guests. The James Dering band played jazz music while guests bid on around 200 items in the silent auction.

Fannin County Game Warden Randolph McGee was the auctioneer for the evening. Judge Lauri Blake’s turtle brownies were the first item up for bid in the live auction and brought in $1050. A custom built entry way gate from Jason Garner Welding tied for the top bid in the live auction, bringing in $2,600 for the nonprofit. A one-of-a-kind bar with headlights that worked that was created by Tracey Lackey, Shawn Fulton, Jim McDonald and Brenda Magness also brought in $2,600.

“This year’s event was amazing!” said Sandy Barber, Executive Director of the Children’s Center. “Once again, the Fannin County community turned out in force this year. It is always inspiring and encouraging to see so much wonderful support for the children we serve. We are so grateful to everyone who played a part in making this event so successful, including our sponsors, auction donors, board, volunteers and staff. The money raised will help us keep up with the growing demand for our services.”

All proceeds from the event will sustain all of the support services provided by the Children’s Center for abused and neglected children, including CASA and the Children’s Advocacy Center.

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Justice Is Served (Live Auction!)

Time is running out to get tickets and tables for the 14th annual “Justice Is Served” to benefit the Fannin County Children’s Center. November 5 is the last day to get early bird pricing of $35 each for individual, open seating tickets. On November 6, the price will go up to $40 per ticket. Reserved seating for two, four, eight or sixteen people is also still available. Deadline to guarantee inclusion in the printed program for sponsors and auction donors is October 31.

Doors to the Multi-Purpose Complex in Bonham will open at 6:00 pm on Saturday, Nov 10. A buffet dinner prepared by Feast on This will be served up by local judges, police chiefs, prosecutors, lawmakers and other justice officials. Guests will enjoy sampling sweet treats from a decadent dessert bar which will feature cupcakes from Cake Lane, sugar cookies from Robin Loreth and gourmet popcorn from Pop Around the Corner.

A preview list of silent and live auction items is posted on the Children’s Center’s website. Live auction items include a one-of-a-kind bar and bar stools created by Tracey Lackey, Shawn Fulton and Brenda Magness, an antique secretary with hutch from Another Time Antiques and Collectibles, a framed Texas Flag from Senator Bob Hall and Judge Lauri Blake’s famous turtle brownies. Outdoorsmen and women may be interested in a one hour hog shoot from a helicopter for two people from Skyhunter Outfitters or a guided fishing trip for three donated by Jason’s Towing and Diesel Repair or a deer feeder donated by Mickey and Sophia Dyson. Children’s Center volunteer Tyler Knight has donated a pair of tickets to see Aaron Watson in concert and go back stage for a meet and greet. Other live auction items include a private wine tasting class for 14-20 people at Total Wine and a Slam Dunk Birthday Party Package for up to 10 guests from Dave & Buster’s in Frisco.

This year’s event theme is The Great Gatsby. Organizers are planning a fun and elegant, 1920’s style evening with live jazz music by the James Dearing band. Guests are encouraged to dress up for this event and even wear 1920’s style clothing.

Proceeds from the event will help sustain a wide variety of programs and services for children, including CASA, Children’s Advocacy Center and child abuse prevention.

Platinum sponsors of the event are Kwik Chek, McCraw Oil, Cole Title Company and Jason Garner Custom Welding.

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Justice Is Served

Tickets and tables are on sale now for the 14th annual “Justice Is Served” to benefit the Fannin County Children’s Center. This year’s theme is The Great Gatsby. Organizers are planning a fun and elegant, 1920’s style evening with live jazz music by the James Dearing band. Guests are encouraged to dress up for this event and even wear 1920’s style clothing. Many of the center’s staff have been busy shopping for sparkly flapper dresses and long pearl necklaces.

Proceeds from the dinner and auction will benefit the local nonprofit agency, which includes CASA, Children’s Advocacy Center and child abuse prevention programs. Doors to the Multi-Purpose Complex in Bonham will open at 6:00 pm on Saturday, Nov 10.

A buffet dinner prepared by Feast on This will be served up by local judges, police chiefs, prosecutors, lawmakers and other justice officials. Guests will enjoy sampling sweet treats from a decadent dessert bar and bidding on numerous items in the silent and live auctions. A preview list of auction items will soon be posted on the center’s website.

Proceeds from the event will help sustain a wide variety of programs and services for children. CASA provides children in foster care a caring, concerned, trained volunteer to advocate for them. The Children’s Advocacy Center (CAC) provides a safe, child-friendly location to go to when abuse is suspected. The CAC provides forensic interviews, counseling, information, referrals and other support services to aid the healing process, including a facility dog named Render.

Platinum sponsors of the event are Kwik Chek, McCraw Oil, Cole Title Company and Jason Garner Custom Welding. Early bird pricing for individual, open seating tickets is $35 by Nov. 5. Tickets will cost $40 after Nov. 5 and at the door. Sponsorships with reserved seating are also still available. Deadline to be in the printed program is Oct. 31.

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TMC Volunteers Donate

TMC Denison SDFI camera 2018Texoma Medical Center Volunteers recently donated $23,500 to the Fannin County Children’s Center. This generous gift, combined with a generous gift from the TMC Bonham Hospital Volunteers will allow the Children’s Center to purchase a very special camera and computer system that can be used in cases of physical and sexual abuse, as well as domestic violence.

Initially, this camera will be used by investigators with CPS and law enforcement in Fannin County to document bruises and other physical injuries. In the future, the Children’s Center plans to build a new facility and include a medical exam room for non-emergency sexual assault exams. The special camera and system can be used in those exams too. The donations will also cover the costs for training for investigators and on-going technical support.

Currently, victims in Fannin County must travel to neighboring counties for specialized medical exams for physical and sexual assaults. “This wonderful gift will help us take a huge step forward in helping victims get this needed service closer to home,” said Sandy Barber with the Children’s Center. “It will also help our investigators be more efficient in their investigations. We are very grateful to the volunteers at both TMC in Denison and Bonham for joining forces to make this happen.”

TMC Bonham SDFI camera 2018

 

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Children’s Center Volunteers Honored

Michelle Hoops

Michelle Hoops

The Fannin County Children’s Center recently held a banquet at First Baptist in Bonham to honor all the volunteers who contribute their time and talents to the local nonprofit organization who serves abused and neglected children.

Michelle Hoops and Phyllis Kinnaird took home the top honors for the CASA program as they were named CASA Volunteers of the Year. Each woman has devoted many hours and driven many miles to visit children in foster care and speak up for them in court and other settings. Both have worked cases that were not easy. Their perseverance has made a difference for their CASA kids.

Tony Winkler earned the honor for the Children’s Center Volunteer of the Year for all his efforts helping around the center. Volunteer Coordinator Andrea Lappin sang his praises for all the ways he helps around the center, including organizing the Rainbow Room, giving away school supplies and many other tasks around the office.

Phyllis Kinnaird

Phyllis Kinnaird

Marta Schreiber was given the CASA Super Star Award for her 19 years of dedicated service as a CASA advocate for children in foster care. Mike Nejtek was awarded the Team Player award for his efforts to pull together all the parties involved in the life of his CASA child to make things start happening for his child. Ray McGovern and Jarrett Tucker both won the CASA Rookie of the Year awards because they have both done excellent work in their first year of becoming CASA advocates.

Kimberly Coffey won the Rainbow Room Volunteer of the Year award for her faithful efforts to come each week to organize and straighten up the clothing, shoes, diapers and other items in the Rainbow Room. Cassidy Barber was given the School Supply Drive Volunteer of the Year award for the many hours she cheerfully gives each year to shopping, organizing and preparing bags for the annual school supply drive. Richard Mattison was honored with the “Get the Job Done” award for all the tasks he completes around the center on a regular basis, including lawn care, changing light bulbs and air filters, cooking meals and more.

Tony Winkler FCCC Vol of YearAll volunteers and board members were recognized and thanked for their service after enjoying a meal catered by The Breakfast Stop. Newly elected board president Brenda Magness welcomed everyone and thanked the volunteers for their service. 336th District Judge Lauri Blake expressed her appreciation for all that CASA volunteers do for the children in foster care. For more information about volunteer opportunities at the Children’s Center, click here 

For more photos, check out our Facebook page photo album.

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North Texas Giving Day a Huge Success in Fannin County!

Nearly $25,000 was raised in one day for nine nonprofits in Fannin County on North Texas Giving Day. This year marked the tenth year of this community wide fundraising event hosted by Communities Foundation of Texas. It was the first year for the event to include Fannin County, Grayson County and a few other counties surrounding Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex.

In all, nearly 2,700 nonprofits participated in North Texas Giving Day on September 20, 2018. A grand total of more than $48 million was raised, which was $9 million more than last year. In Fannin County alone, 144 donations to 9 organizations totaled up to $24,414.
The nine nonprofits in Fannin County who participated included Bonham Education Foundation, Bonham High School Band Boosters, Chi Lambda, Fannin County Children’s Center, Fannin Health Clinic, Fannin Pregnancy Care Center, Morning Star Academy, SMAS Patient Assistance and The Isaiah’s Closet.

The Children’s Center raised an amazing $9,366.  These funds will be designated to go to a future building fund.  As the demands for the services provided at the center have increased dramatically, the number of people working and volunteering at the center have increased.  A new, larger space is needed to have room for all of the services and programs offered by the center, as well as space for partner representatives from CPS, law enforcement, prosecution and medical professionals.

North Texas Giving Day is powered by Communities Foundation of Texas, a 65-year-old community foundation that has presented North Texas Giving Day since 2009. The foundation professionally manages more than 1,000 charitable funds for families, companies, foundations and nonprofits and has awarded more than $1.8 billion in grants since its founding in 1953.

North Texas Giving Day is a community-wide celebration and an event that lifts up giving by engaging the entire community to support local nonprofits, celebrating their important role in strengthening the region. It is also an efficient way for charitable organizations to raise funding for critical services to support North Texans. For more about North Texas Giving Day, go to www.northtexasgivingday.org.

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Child Abuse Cases Increasing

The Fannin County Children’s Center reports that the number of cases they are seeing has been growing at a significant rate. Most notably, the Children’s Advocacy Center (CAC) received 266 new referrals in the fiscal year ending August 31, 2018. This was a 116% increase over the previous year. The CAC staff also conducted 240 forensic interviews in the same year, which was a 124% increase over the previous year when 107 interviews were done.

CAC therapists provided 959 counseling sessions, which was only slightly more than the previous year. Another notable increase was the number of special medical exams completed. Sexual abuse victims must travel to neighboring counties for these exams and last year 25 were completed, which was more than double the previous year when only 11 exams were completed.

CASA served 131 children in the past year, which marked the second year in a row for this program to set a new record for the number of children served. Overall, CASA has served 58% more children over the past two years. In the past year, CASA attended 275 court hearings, 8 family group conferences, 43 permanency conferences and 26 mediations. CASA volunteers logged in 5,744 hours and more than 47,000 miles in their advocacy for the 131 children. Volunteer hours have increased 79% over the past two years.

“The big question, of course, is why are we seeing such a significant increase?” said Sandy Barber, Executive Director of the Fannin County Children’s Center. “I think one factor is that our local CPS office is more fully staffed and supported than they have been in the past. Another factor is that last year the Sheriff’s Office got a grant to hire an investigator who could specialize in working crimes against children cases.”

“A third factor could possibly be the #MeToo movement that started about a year ago,” said Barber. “One of the lessons learned from many of these stories is that victims sometimes did say something to someone they were close to, but no one reported the cases to the authorities who could investigate.”

In the past year, the Children’s Center also provided child abuse prevention education to 194 adults. The mission of the Fannin County Children’s Center is promoting safety and improving the lives of abused and neglected children. The center’s programs include CASA, Children’s Advocacy Center and child abuse prevention. Earlier this year, the center celebrated 25 years of serving children.

“We have been working hard to keep up with the growing need for our services,” said Barber. “We are thrilled that the Fannin County Commissioners Court has included funding in the coming year’s budget to continue the special investigator position, even though the grant was not re-newed.”

“One of the things we are also working on is finding a new, larger facility,” said Barber. The center has outgrown their current location near the courthouse in Bonham. “Community members are invited to donate to the center for North Texas Giving Day in order to help us build the dream of a new facility,” continued Barber. On September 20, donors can go to www.northtexasgivingday.org/fanninccc to make a gift for the new facility.

FCCC 1

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2018 School Supply Report

Many children went back to school with supplies, thanks to a generous community and some hard-working volunteers and staff at a local non-profit agency. The Fannin County Children’s Center gave school supplies to 515 students from all over the county.

This year was the 22nd year in a row that the Children’s Center has provided free school supplies to needy families. This year’s number of students served was down a little over last year when 588 students were assisted.

“Once again, this effort would not be possible without so many generous donors, as well as our dedicated volunteers and staff,” said Sandy Barber, Executive Director of the Children’s Center. Many local individuals, families, churches, businesses and other organizations contributed pencils, crayons, markers, paper, notebooks, cash and other items to the project. Several individual volunteers and several church groups volunteered their time to organize and prepare supplies for the distribution.

 

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Bridges Out of Poverty

bridges (2)Four local organizations are teaming up to bring the Overview of Bridges Out of Poverty workshop to Bonham. MasterKey Ministries, Fannin County Children’s Center, Texoma Health Foundation and First Presbyterian Church of Bonham are working together to bring this training opportunity to volunteers and professionals in Fannin County.

The Overview of Bridges Out of Poverty workshop covers the strategies for professionals and communities to help improve the lives of people in poverty and, by extension, help make sustainable communities in which everyone can do well. It will be a lively, interactive day that lays out the philosophy, approach and framework to do just that.

Participants will learn to use the knowledge of people in poverty to build an accurate mental model of poverty, study poverty research to build prosperous and healthy communities, understand and apply theories of change, share Bridges constructs with people in poverty and create sustainable communities.

The class is designed for volunteers and professionals at nonprofits, schools, churches, government agencies and other organizations. The class will be held on Wednesday, October 10, 2018 from 8:30 am to 3:00 pm at First Presbyterian Church at 818 N Main in Bonham, Texas.

There is a registration fee of $30 per person, which includes light breakfast, lunch and Bridges Out of Poverty workbook. A limited number of scholarships are available by contacting Shunnay Gilmore at Texoma Health Foundation at gilmore@texomahealth.org or 903.337.0755.

Registration deadline is September 25. Seating is limited, so registration may close earlier if the capacity has been reached. Registration is online at www.fanninccc.org.

Register now

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North Texas Giving Day is Coming to Fannin County!

North Texas Giving Day is set for September 20, 2018. This year marks the tenth year of this community wide fundraising event hosted by Communities Foundation of Texas. It is the first year for the event to include Fannin County and a few other counties surrounding Dallas/Fort Worth Metroplex.

NTXGiveDay 2018More than 2,600 nonprofits are participating in North Texas Giving Day, including nine nonprofits in Fannin County. Those organizations include: Bonham Education Foundation, Bonham High School Band Boosters, Chi Lambda, Fannin County Children’s Center, Fannin Health Clinic, Fannin Pregnancy Care Center, Morning Star Academy, SMAS Patient Assistance and The Isaiah’s Closet.

On September 20, community members can go to www.northtexasgivingday.org and make donations to all of their favorite charities in one place. Gifts will support local causes and help build a stronger and more vibrant community. Contributions will also give the participating nonprofits the chances to win prizes and earn bonus funds. Some nonprofits have also secured 1:1 matching funds to make donations stretch even farther.

New this year, donors will have 10 days to schedule their North Texas Giving Day gifts starting September 10. To do this, donors can go to www.northtexasgivingday.org and schedule their gifts, much like you can schedule on-line bill paying. All gifts scheduled from September 10-19 will not be processed until September 20.

Community members can also choose to be an ambassador for their favorite local nonprofit by signing up for their own FUNdraising page and asking their friends and family to join them in giving. North Texas Giving Day provides an opportunity for everyone to be a philanthropist. Every gift, no matter what size matters. When many people give together, the impact is even greater.

North Texas Giving Day is powered by Communities Foundation of Texas, a 65-year-old community foundation that has presented North Texas Giving Day since 2009. The foundation professionally manages more than 1,000 charitable funds for families, companies, foundations and nonprofits and has awarded more than $1.8 billion in grants since its founding in 1953.

North Texas Giving Day is a community-wide celebration and an event that lifts up giving by engaging the entire community to support local nonprofits, celebrating their important role in strengthening the region. It is also an efficient way for charitable organizations to raise funding for critical services to support North Texans. For more about North Texas Giving Day and the nine participating nonprofits in Fannin County, go to www.northtexasgivingday.org.

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