By Darla Shelden
City Sentinel Reporter
The program, which will feature updates from the OKC Black Chamber and a “Mission Spotlight” by the staff of CASA, will take place from 8-10 a.m. at the University of Central Oklahoma CHK/Central Boathouse, 732 Riversport Drive, in Oklahoma City’s Boathouse District.
The event is open to the public and a complimentary breakfast will be catered by Kamp’s of Oklahoma City.
“We are thrilled for the opportunity to share our mission,” said CASA of Oklahoma County Executive Director Jennie Hill. “Year after year, statistics show that a disproportionate number of children of color are taken into state custody in Oklahoma and around the nation.
“Ensuring that our volunteer base more closely reflects the children we serve is one of the primary ways CASA can better advocate for Oklahoma County’s foster youth,” Hill said. “It is core to our organizational philosophy to both celebrate and learn from diverse perspectives.”
The goal of the CASA program’s is to provide trained volunteers to be champions for the best interests of children in foster care.
“CASA works directly with the most vulnerable children in Oklahoma County.Events like Fresh Start allow us to shine a spotlight on the disproportionality in the foster system and spread the word that these children need an advocate on their side,” said OKC Black Chamber CEO Eran Harrill. “I’m excited to call the community into action to make sure these children have a voice during this tumultuous time in their lives.”
Their website describes the OKC Black Chamber as a collective of organizations and citizens who invest their time, energy, and financial resources for the benefit of unified community development. Its goal is to market the greater Oklahoma City metro area, attracting new growth, while providing advocacy for minority businesses and individuals.
Event organizers encourage guests to bring business cards and take the opportunity to network with the many OKC Black Chamber partners and other locals in attendance, The Fresh Start breakfast will offer an opportunity for participants to learn how different products and services fit the various needs of the community.
Harrill encourages OKC Black Chamber partners to invite prospective organizations and other professionals to network with others at the breakfast.
“At CASA, we appreciate having such a great opportunity for stakeholders right here in Oklahoma County to learn not just about CASA, but about other businesses and organizations from around the metro,” Hill added. “Come join us for a bite to eat – and be present as we unveil a surprise video project CASA’s been working on the past few months.”
CASA of Oklahoma County, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit that serves over 700 of the nearly 2000 children in the Oklahoma County juvenile court system each year.
For more information about the Fresh Start breakfast, contact CASA at 405-713-6605. To learn more about other CASA programs, visit the Oklahoma CASA Association website at oklahomacasa.org