Douglas county observes government week

It is National County Government Week in Douglas County and commissioners approved a proclamation celebrating the "leadership, innovation and valuable service provided by the nation's counties, especially in the protection and welfare of children."

"I was privileged to receive that proclamation on behalf of our Court Appointed Special Advocate program and Austin's House," said CASA Director Linda Cuddy.

Cuddy said Douglas County as a community has recognized the needs of children in crisis in our community.

"We have 38 dedicated CASA volunteers who are the 'voice' of children involved in matters before the court - first and foremost, children who have been abused and neglected," she said.

The proclamation acknowledges that "...more than 500,000 children are in foster care, removed from their families, as a result of suspected abuse or neglect."

Cuddy said Austin's House enables the children who have had to be removed from their families for their safety to remain in their community and their schools and is a tribute to local generosity and an understanding of the crises children face.

"In the first six months of operation, Austin's House provided a home for infants, children who have aged out of the system and all ages in between," she said.

"There is a population that we need to be concerned about and that is the children who have been waiting for a permanent home most of their lives and now find themselves, at 18, facing the world with limited skills. The nurturing staff at Austin's House have been surprised at the relationships that have developed with these young adults who stay in touch with the staff by telephone because it's important to hear the voice of someone who cares."


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