Kids Art Contest

The Fannin County Children’s Center is seeking children’s artwork for their annual contest. Children and youth ages 18 and under are invited to enter their work of art for a chance to win prizes and help other children.

The contest judges will be looking for artwork that illustrates the theme “Open Your Heart.” They will be looking for something that is eye catching and heart-warming. Winning entries in the past have often included hearts, kids, families and bright, cheerful colors, as well as the words “Open Your Heart” and “Fannin County Children’s Center.”

Two winning entries will win special ribbons and cash prizes. The first place artist will receive a $100 cash, a blue ribbon and their artwork will be reproduced on the front of the campaign card. Second place will win a $50 cash, a red ribbon and have their artwork included inside of the card. The cards that feature the winning artwork will be used to help the local nonprofit raise funds to provide advocacy, counseling and other critical support services for the abused and neglected children of Fannin County.

Artwork must be turned in by 5 pm on Friday, February 11 at the Children’s Center at 112 West Fifth in Bonham. Entry forms, contest rules and more information can be found at www.fanninccc.org and at the center at 112 W. 5th in Bonham or by calling (903) 583-4339.

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Bridges out of Poverty Workshop

bridges (2)A one-day Bridges out of Poverty workshop is scheduled for Friday, January 28, 2022 at First Presbyterian Church, 818 N. Main in Bonham.

Bridges out of Poverty training is designed to give participants a deeper understanding of the challenges and strengths of people living in poverty.

• Discover why “middle class” solutions to poverty don’t produce the expected results and what works instead
• Increase awareness of how economic class impacts life experience, resources and stability
• Learn how communities have successfully implemented the Bridges out of Poverty model, empowering under-resourced individuals to change their lives by discovering and overcoming barriers to success through programs like Getting Ahead.

Who should attend this training? Volunteers and professionals at nonprofits, schools, churches, government agencies and other organizations – EVERYONE has gifts and talents to help change a community. As participants gain empathy and a better understanding of the challenges faced by people in poverty, they will be able to build better relationships with those living in poverty and create opportunities for their success.

There is a registration fee of $40 per person, which includes light breakfast, lunch and Bridges Out of Poverty workbook. A limited number of scholarships are available, thanks to Texoma Health Foundation. To request, email Kim Tillett-Poole at Poole@texomahealth.org.

Registration deadline is January 11, 2022. Seating is limited, so registration may close earlier if the capacity has been reached. For more details and online registration, visit http://www.fanninccc.org/home/get-help/bridges-out-of-poverty-training/.

This event is sponsored by
• Fannin County Children’s Center
• Getting Ahead Fannin County
• First Presbyterian Church of Bonham
• MasterKey Ministries
• Ministerial Alliance
• Richard Glaser, Fannin County Criminal District Attorney
• Texoma Health Foundation
• Texoma Regional Foundation

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MW and Fair Miller Foundation

Trustees from the MW and Fair Miller Foundation recently presented a check for $23,000 to the Fannin County Children’s Center.  Pictured from left are Dr. Jerry Hopson, Sandy Barber, Tyler Todd and Dr. Dana Sisk.

Trustees from the MW and Fair Miller Foundation recently presented a check for $23,000 to the Fannin County Children’s Center. Pictured from left are Dr. Jerry Hopson, Sandy Barber, Tyler Todd and Dr. Dana Sisk.

Trustees with the M.W. and Fair Miller Foundation have once again been delivering lots of holiday cheer in December by presenting generous grants to several schools and other youth serving organizations in Fannin County. One generous gift was for $23,000 to the Fannin County Children’s Center.

“We are delighted and deeply honored to receive such a generous gift,” said Sandy Barber, Executive Director of the Children’s Center. “This gift will provide many critical support services for kids from hard places.”

A portion of this gift will help stock the Rainbow Rooms with new clothing, shoes, diapers and other needed items by the children and youth served by CASA, Children’s Advocacy Center and Child Protective Services. Other funds will help provide training to the volunteers and professionals who work directly with children from hard places. The grant will also provide trauma focused professional counseling for children and youth as well as supplies needed in therapy sessions.

The M.W. and Fair Miller Foundation was incorporated in 1988 and organized for the betterment and care of the children in Fannin County. Currently serving on the Board of Trustees are Dr. Jerry Hopson, Tyler Todd and Dr. Dana Sisk.

The Fannin County Children’s Center is a nonprofit agency that has been serving abused and neglected children since 1993. Programs include CASA, Children’s Advocacy Center and child abuse prevention. For more information about the Children’s Center, including volunteer opportunities, go to www.fanninccc.org.

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Christmas All Wrapped Up!

In all, 293 children received Christmas gifts from the Fannin County Children’s Center, thanks to a generous community and many hard-working volunteers and staff.

For the second year in a row, the Children’s Center created a pop-up store to serve the children served by CASA and the Children’s Advocacy Center. Some CASA children were still served the traditional way. The pop-up store gave parents, caregivers or advocates an opportunity to select presents for their children. Each child got a book and either a coat, hoodie or pair of shoes. Each family got one family board game and plenty of wrapping paper. Caregivers were also able to select toys and other gifts using a point system.

“Over the years, our traditional way of doing Christmas had grown to be more than our staff could reasonably manage. We learned of this pop-up store idea from other Children’s Advocacy Centers,” said Sandy Barber of the Children’s Center. “This way of getting gifts to kids turned out to be much more empowering for our families and allowed for more volunteer involvement.”

“Over and over again, we heard parents and other caregivers express their gratitude for this help for Christmas,” said Barber. “There were even some happy tears and lots of hugs of appreciation too.”

“The generosity of our community was overwhelming once again. So many individuals, businesses, churches and other groups gave what they could and it all added up to make sure all of the children served by CASA and the Children’s Advocacy Center have something special for Christmas,” said Barber.

Eighteen local businesses set up teddy bear trees to help collect gifts for the children, including 9-1-1 Nutrition, Blessings & Butterflies, Bonham Chrysler, Brookshire’s Grocery, CapTex Bank (Bonham & Trenton), First United Bank (Bonham & Leonard), Fix and Feed, Gayle’s, Harper’s Creations Baker, Legend Bank, Rebel Roots Boutique, Red River Gypsies, Shockley State Farm, Stay Grounded Coffee Company, Tax-Assessor Collector’s Office (Tag Office), Texas Farm Bureau Insurance, WalMart and Warrior Tire.

“Many of these businesses have been doing this for many years. Others were new this year,” said Barber. “We are very grateful for their assistance and generous support of our Christmas Drive.”

Gifting The Cycle is a nonprofit that gives bicycles to children in the North Texas area. They gave 59 bicycles and helmets to the Children’s Center for Christmas presents.

For more information about the Children’s Center, call (903) 583-4339 or go to www.fanninccc.org.

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Christmas Drive is Underway!

teddy bearThe Fannin County Children’s Center is currently seeking donations for their annual Christmas Drive.  Last year, generous donors made it possible for 224 children and youth served by the center to get presents of clothing, coats, shoes, toys and other gifts. Organizers expect to serve a similar number of children this year.

Some of the children helped by this project are living in foster homes, away from family and friends.  Other children have gone to live with grandparents or other relatives as a result of abuse or neglect.  Many of these families struggle financially when one or more children suddenly come to live with them.  In other families, the discovery of sexual abuse in the home has meant the loss of family income when the offender leaves.

Donations of cash, toys, new coats, new hoodies, shoes and other items are now being accepted.

Teddy bear trees, which contain wishes or needs are up at:

  • 9-1-1 Nutrition
  • Blessings & Butterflies
  • Bonham Chrysler
  • CapTex Bank (Bonham & Trenton)
  • First United Bank (Bonham & Leonard)
  • Fix and Feed
  • Legend Bank
  • Rebel Roots Boutique
  • Red River Gypsies
  • Shockley State Farm
  • Stay Grounded Coffee Company
  • Tax-Assessor Collector’s Office (Tag Office)
  • Texas Farm Bureau Insurance
  • WalMart
  • Warrior Tire

For donors who are short on time, the center also accepts cash donations which will be used to purchase gifts for the children.

The center also has an Amazon Wish List: https://a.co/fTwO7Kb

Donations can be brought or mailed to the center at 112 West Fifth Street, Bonham, Texas 75418.  The center is open 8 am to 5 pm, Monday – Friday, with extended hours until 6 pm on Dec 6-8.

Organizers ask that the donations arrive by Dec 8, or earlier if possible.  This will allow time for gifts to be sorted and delivered in time for the holidays.  Checks should be made out to FCCC and indicate they are for Christmas.  Donations can also be made by online on the center’s website.  All donations are tax deductible to the extent allowable by law.  For more information, call 903-583-4339 or visit www.fanninccc.org.

Wish List for Christmas gifts for kids

  • Toys for children under 3
  • Arts and craft sets, markers, colored pencils, paints, paper, etc,
  • Make up sets, perfume or cologne sets
  • Bath & Body sets – for teen girls and teen boys
  • Curling irons, straighteners and make up mirrors
  • Blue tooth speakers, head phones and earbuds
  • Lego sets
  • Family board games
  • Baby dolls with accessories such as strollers, beds, etc.
  • Remote control cars and trucks
  • Coats for boys and girls of all ages
  • Hoodies for teens
  • Tennis shoes
  • Clothing for toddlers
  • Hat, gloves and scarf sets
  • Fleece or soft, fuzzy blankets
  • Bedding sets (twin and full size)
  • Bike helmets
  • Sports ball – footballs, basketballs, volleyballs, soccer balls
  • $25 Gift cards to WalMart and Amazon

 

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McCraw Oil and TXB Help Kids!

Sherry and Sandy 2021The Fannin County Children’s Center was thrilled to accept a donation of $15,000 from TXB (formerly Kwik Chek) and McCraw Oil recently. This check was one of several being delivered around the state by Sherry Capehart, on behalf of the two companies.

This gift was part of the proceeds from the 25th annual Doyce Taylor Memorial Golf and Fishing Tournament held earlier this year. This year’s tournament raised a grand total of $60,000 for CASA programs, which brings the 13-year grand total for CASA to $682,000.

“We are so thankful for the continued support from our vendors and participants at our annual fishing and golf tournaments, so we can keep giving back to Texas CASA year after year,” said Capehart. “Plans are already underway for our 2022 tournaments.”

Children’s Center Executive Director Sandy Barber said “We simply cannot say ‘thank you’ enough to our friends at TXB and McCraw Oil. Their generosity year after year is amazing. Not only do they work hard to make the golf tournament happen to make these generous gifts to us and other CASA programs, they sponsor our events, their employees volunteer their time at the center and they always answer our calls for help.”

CASA, which stands for Court Appointed Special Advocates, recruits and trains volunteers to become advocates for children in foster care. When a judge determines that a child is no longer safe in their own home, CASA is assigned to gather information and make recommendations to the courts about what would be best for the child.
The gift to the Children’s Center will support children in foster care by providing trained volunteer advocates. To learn more about the Children’s Center, go to www.FanninCCC.org.

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Record Setting Justice Is Served!

honorable servers 2021New records were set at the 17th Annual “Justice Is Served” fundraiser last Saturday. Very early estimates are that the event raised at least $88,000 for the Fannin County Children’s Center. This amount was a huge increase over the previous best of $67,000 from two years ago. Nearly 500 people attended the event at the Complex.

This year’s event was a Masquerade Ball. Many guests dressed up in elegant outfits and wore masquerade style masks to fit the event theme. Tables at the Complex were decorated with rich colors, feathers, and masquerade masks.

State Representative Reggie Smith, 336th District Judge Lauri Blake, Fannin County Judge Randy Moore, Fannin County Criminal District Attorney Richard Glaser, Fannin County Sheriff Mark Johnson, several police chiefs and other local officials of the justice system served up dinner to the guests.

James Dering led a jazz combo that played upbeat jazz music while guests viewed and bid on about 200 items in the silent auction. Guests also had fun taking turns at the SMP Party photo booth sponsored by Red River Gypsies.

Fannin County Game Warden Randolph McGee was the auctioneer for the evening. The highest winning bid of the night and in the seventeen-year history of this event was $5,300 for the Courage Item donated by the Board of Directors of the Children’s Center. Board Vice-President Faith Rich introduced the mystery item by describing the courage children have when they report abuse and neglect and encouraging the audience to have courage in bidding on the mystery item that would be worth at least $1,500 – $2,000. Bryant and Kimberly Smith won the Courage Item and later learned that they won a trip to Angel Fire, New Mexico.

“I love Justice is Served and have some very special memories over the years,” said Kenneth Karl, Justice of the Peace, Pct 2. “I cannot imagine missing it. Last night though, as the last item was auctioned, I had tears. It just came over me: this is why we, my family, cherish Fannin County and its people. With the value of the unknown Courage item at no more than $2000, the bids went all the way to $5300. The true reason for the event was on full display. We do what we can, we give what we can, we come together, in the hope for a better tomorrow for our children.”

Warrior Tire donated a trip for two to Nashville that sold for $3,600. A custom gate from Jason Garner Custom Welding also sold for $3,600 in the live auction. After the bidding ended, the crew from Jason Garner Custom Welding announced that two more gates would be made available to the next two highest bidders. The additional two gates brought in another $6,500 in all.

First United Bank was the first ever presenting Diamond Sponsor of the event. Platinum sponsors included Jason Garner Custom Welding, TXB, McCraw Oil and Propane, B&B Service Center/Driver’s Choice, Renlita Custom Opening Solutions, 4R Coatings, LLC and Bonham Chrysler.

Funds raised from the event will help the Children’s Center keep up with the growing demand for their services as well as cover for recent losses in some grant funds. Proceeds will provide counseling, advocacy, forensic interviews and more to help children from hard places heal, grow and thrive. To learn more about the Children’s Center, including volunteer opportunities, go to www.fanninccc.org.

First United Diamond Sponsor

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First United Supporting Kids!

First United Diamond SponsorJustice Is Served is a dinner and auction event to benefit the Fannin County Children’s Center. First United Bank is the presenting Diamond Sponsor of this 17th annual event.

“It’s our pleasure to sponsor Fannin County Children’s Center’s Justice is Served,” said Alan McDonald with First United. “The volunteers, staff, and Board that serve children in need are unsung heroes. The Children’s Center’s mission aligns with First United Bank’s values of faith and family, as well as seeking to elevate the lives of others. In this case, there are many Fannin County children that can’t protect themselves or care for themselves and so need the center’s services to help them find a loving, safe and healthy place to live at a difficult time in their lives.”

Proceeds from the event will provide counseling, advocacy and other critical support services to children, youth and families recovering from the trauma of abuse and neglect.

This year’s event is a hybrid event, with both in-person and online elements. The in-person event will be a Masquerade Ball at the MultiPurpose Complex in Bonham on Saturday, Nov. 13. Doors will open at 6 pm. Guests will enjoy dinner, drinks, desserts and an evening of fun, including a live auction. Dinner will be made by Feast on This and served up buffet style by local judges, police chiefs, sheriff, DA and others in the justice system. Guests are encouraged to dress up for an elegant evening out and wear masquerade masks.

The Baked Goods Auction and Silent Auction will be on-line and anyone with access to the internet can participate without purchasing a ticket.

The Baked Goods Auction will be on Wednesday, Nov. 10. Bidding will open at 9:00 am and end at 5:15 pm. Winners can pick up their items at the Children’s Center the same day until 7 pm or on Thursday or Friday from 8 am to 5 pm.

Bidding for the Silent Auction will start online at 7 pm on Wednesday, Nov. 10 and end at 9 pm on Saturday, Nov. 13. The silent auction items will be on display at the in-person event at the Complex on Saturday night. Winners who are present at the Complex can take their items home that Saturday evening as usual. Winners who do not attend the in-person event can pick up their items at the Children’s Center on Sunday between 2-4 pm or during normal business hours Monday – Friday 8 am to 5 pm. There will also be options to mail most items to the winners too.

Auction items will include many homemade baked goods, jewelry, home furnishings, hand crafted items, gift cards and gift baskets. Warrior Tire is donating a trip for two to Nashville and the Grand Ole Opry. David Keene donated several beautiful, hand-crafted pens made from Bois d’Arc wood from Fannin County. Senator Bob Hall has given a beautiful wood and leather chair with the State of Texas seal on it. Total Wine donated a private wine class for up to 20 people.

The auction website is up and running. Auction items can be previewed online now and more items are being added daily. Guests are encouraged to register to bid before coming to the Saturday night event, as it will make the check-in process go quicker.

Tickets and tables are on sale now. Early bird ticket prices are $50 each when purchase by Nov 8. Starting Nov 9, tickets, if available, will go up to $75 each. Go to www.fanninccc.org for more event info including the dinner menu, auction preview, ticket purchases and more!

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Ticket & Tables on sale now for Justice Is Served!

Tickets and tables are on sale now for the 17th Annual Justice Is Served.  This dinner and auction event will benefit the Fannin County Children’s Center and provide critical support services to children, youth and families recovering from abuse and neglect.

The in-person event will be a Masquerade Ball at the MultiPurpose Complex in Bonham on Saturday, Nov. 13, starting at 6 pm.  Ticket prices include dinner, drinks, desserts and an evening of fun.  Fannin County Game Warden Randolph McGee will be the auctioneer for the Live Auction.  Bidding in the live auction will be in-person only.  Dinner will be made by Feast on This and served up buffet style by local judges, police chiefs, sheriff, DA and others in the justice system.  Guests are encouraged to dress up for an elegant evening out and wear masquerade masks.

The Baked Goods Auction and Silent Auction will be on-line and anyone with access to the internet can participate without purchasing a ticket.

The Baked Goods Auction will be on Wednesday, Nov. 10.  Bidding will open at 9:00 am and end at 5:15 pm.  Winners can pick up their items at the Children’s Center the same day until 7 pm or on Thursday or Friday from 8 am to 5 pm.

Bidding for the Silent Auction will start online at 7 pm on Wednesday, Nov. 10 and end at 9 pm on Saturday, Nov. 13.  The silent auction items will be on display at the in-person event at the Complex on Saturday night.  Winners who are present at the Complex can take their items homes that Saturday evening.  Winners who do not attend the in-person event can pick up their items at the Children’s Center on Sunday between 2-4 pm or during normal business hours Monday – Friday 8 am to 5 pm.  There will also be options to mail most items to the winners too.

Auction items will include many homemade baked goods, jewelry, home furnishings, hand crafted items, gift cards and gift baskets.  Rick Bankston donated a beautiful hand carved eagle made of oak.  Jason and Kelly Royse donated a hand-crafted picnic table made of wood and steel made by Andrew Kopf. Sunshine Dental is giving a trip to Broken Bow and Hot 107.3 FM is giving a two night stay at Tanglewood.  L4 Construction and Manufacturing is donating a load of rock, sand or dirt, valued at $900.  The auction website is up and everyone can preview items now.  More auction items are being added regularly.

First United Bank is the presenting Diamond Sponsor of the event.  Organizers are still seeking event sponsors and donations of auction items.  Proceeds from the event will provide services to children and youth including counseling, advocacy, forensic interviews and more.  Go to  www.fanninccc.org for more event info, auction preview, ticket purchases and more!

 

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State Farm Helping Kids

State Farm 2021 SS“Growing up my family always had a passion for helping underprivileged kids,” said Jake Shockley, a local State Farm agent. “So this is a cause that is really close to my heart.”

“Jake and his team from State Farm were a huge help with our 25th Annual School Supply Drive,” said Sandy Barber, Executive Director of the Fannin County Children’s Center. “Not only did they donate boxes and boxes full of backpacks filled with supplies, they helped a lot on the day of the big drive thru giveaway. They braved the heat to help get paperwork completed, filled orders and carried backpacks full of supplies to the cars.”

“There are too many children in Fannin County that lack the basic necessities,” said Shockley. “Anything we can do to help those kids have the same opportunities that we were so blessed to have growing up is something we want to be a part of! If a new backpack and some new school supplies helps them feel proud and gets their year kicked off to a good start, maybe that will be a start to making a difference in their lives.”

In all, 617 kids got backpacks filled with school supplies thanks to Shockley and many other generous donors and dedicated volunteers.

“It was great event that the Children’s Center put on,” said Shockley. “We were proud to be a part of it.”

“We are grateful for the partnership we have formed with Jake and his team,” said Barber. “Looking ahead, they have also already pledged to be a sponsor for Justice Is Served and volunteer with our Christmas Drive. It’s folks like them who give and help how they can that make our work possible.”

The Children’s Center is currently seeking sponsors and auction items for their big fundraising event called Justice Is Served. The Center is also seeking volunteers to help in a variety of roles. To learn more about the Children’s Center, go to www.FanninCCC.org or call (903) 583-4339.

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