To the editor:
At Thanksgiving we take time to count our blessings. This year, I’m especially thankful for the eight active Yadkin County volunteers who serve as Guardian ad Litem Advocates for this county’s abused and neglected foster children.
As Guardians ad Litem, these advocates stand up for the children in court and make sure their safety, health and best interests are at the forefront of any decisions made. They visit the child once a month and keep touch with teachers, therapists and social workers. They are appointed by judges to be their eyes and ears on the children. They give the child a voice in the legal process as their parents try to repair their families to bring the children home.
Because of family dysfunction, foster children may be in DSS custody a year or more. Sometimes it can be many more. The guardian ad litem is often the only constant during their time in “the system.” The Advocates’ greatest contribution is their efforts to shorten the length of time a child remains in foster care limbo.
Currently there are 36 Yadkin County children in need of an advocate. We have wonderful guardians ad litem who are working to make sure these children have safe and happy homes permanently.
Unfortunately they can’t cover this large caseload. We have 16 children who need an advocate but don’t have one.
So this year, as well as being thankful for our neighbors who are already a guardian ad litem, I’m thankful — and hopeful — for you, who may see this and realize you could do something to help the children as well.
The need is urgent, the rewards life-changing. For more information, please go to www.volunteerforgal.org, call me at 336-651-4421 or stop by the Yadkin GAL office in the Yadkin County Courthouse next to DMV. There are 16 Yadkin children who would be thankful if you did.
Guardian ad Litem District 23