In the event of a natural disaster – such as Hurricane Ian and its aftermath – lead community-based care agency Safe Children Coalition (SCC) continues to ensure the well-being and oversight of the nearly 1,700 children in the child welfare system in Circuit 12 (Sarasota, Manatee and DeSoto counties). Regardless of external conditions, case managers remain responsible for and committed to assuring the safety of children in the organization’s care.
In advance of Hurricane Ian, SCC’s emergency assessment team met daily to monitor the path of the storm, and case managers contacted every reachable foster family, group home, or location with children in SCC’s care to ensure each of them had a safety plan. Immediately after the storm, reachable families were contacted again to assess their status and to address any needs they may have. The emergency assessment team continues to meet daily to review the status of each and every child in SCC’s care within Circuit 12.
Even as the approximately 300 staff members – social workers, case managers, therapists and more – worried about their own safety and homes as the hurricane loomed, their mission has remained to protect children, strengthen families, and build community. In fact, several staff members have lost their homes as the agency continues to work on behalf of children in our child welfare system.
“Our immediate priority was to secure our staff, so that they could continue to make sure our children would be safe,” said SCC president and CEO Brena Slater. “Even under the most difficult circumstances, our mission is to protect children, no matter what the obstacles or challenges may be.”
To assist families impacted by the storm, SCC has created the Hurricane Ian Relief Fund for Safe Children Coalition Families. Funds raised will help SCC fulfill special needs for medical care foster homes as well as provide gift cards for food, medicines, and other immediate needs not fulfilled by other agencies. For families who have lost everything, it will help in SCC’s efforts to locate and provide them with temporary shelter.
“Crises such as natural disasters can have an even more devastating effect on foster care homes, adoptive families, reunified families, and families at risk of entering the child welfare system,” said Jacqueline House, vice president of communications and community engagement for SCC. “Our families need us now, more than ever. Gifts of any amount will be most appreciated and will help at-risk families continue to weather the aftermath of Hurricane Ian.”
Donations can be made securely via SCC’s website at sccfl.org/hurricane-ian-relief-fund; there is a link for anyone wishing to donate cryptocurrency as well as information about making donations via telephone or check. For more information, contact House at 941-225-6166 or email@example.com.
About Safe Children Coalition, Inc.
Safe Children Coalition, Inc. (SCC) serves as the lead agency for community-based care for Sarasota, Manatee and DeSoto counties. SCC is a collaboration between local community agencies who provide services to children and families in need. SCC is committed to protecting children, strengthening families, and building community. The core functions provided by SCC include child welfare case management, foster care, adoption, independent living, prevention, diversion, quality management, and support services. Visit sccfl.org or call 941-371-4799.