February Parenting Tips: "Showing Love to Your Children"
More CASA Volunteers Needed!
CANO in the Spotlight
Miami Pilot Club Learns about CASA
New CASA Advertisement on Pelivans
Happy Valentine's Day!
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As the Executive Director of a nonprofit serving children, it's probably no great surprise that I am a huge fan of the "short set".
I love sticky fingers and stinky toes. I love belly laughs and exuberant hugging, preferably while jumping up and down. I love "baby talk" and the smell of Johnson's baby shampoo.
There is nothing more important than letting children know how much they mean to us. I think of my own, who are not so little anymore, and how their faces continue to light up when I express my undying love to them. No matter how old they are, they need to hear "I love you" as often as possible. Let's make Valentine's Day an everyday occasion for our kids.
Wishing you butterfly kisses and exuberant hugging......
Each month, Child Advocates of Northeast Oklahoma (CANO) highlights the self-less work of one of our CASA volunteers. This month’s Spotlight features Vondie Fletcher, who works with foster children in Ottawa County.
Vondie, who is married to Troy Fletcher, lives in Miami, OK.She has two grown sons, one daughter-in-law, and two beautiful grandbabies.Active in her community, she has served in several roles in her home church, First Christian Church in Miami, and recently served on the board of the Ottawa County United Way.
Vondie shared, “I have been a part of volunteer activities throughout my adult life – March of Dimes, United Way, church.But as far as volunteering, this has been the most fulfilling and rewarding yet intense situations that I have ever been a part of.Just knowing and understanding that I have been able to give a “voice” for the children and, hopefully, helped them to end up in a safe living environment.”
Vondie has been a CASA volunteer since October 2016.When asked about how she got involved in CASA, she explained that she had read through the CASA funding request paperwork when she was on the board of the Ottawa County United Way.She stated, “I felt like it was something I needed to be looking into as I felt like I was at a point in my life to give back to the community, so I contacted CASA.”
Serving as a CASA volunteer comes with some challenges.For Vondie, her greatest challenge is the emotional turmoil of working on a case.She shared, “The biggest challenge would be actually trying to put my emotions into a file cabinet drawer, so that I can sleep at night because I am a very emotional person.I’m trying to separate that from day to day, but I try to use that emotion when needed as well.That was a real struggle at the beginning, but I’ve gotten better at that now.”
“The other part is I am a ‘fix it’ person,” she continued.“If I see something that needs to be fixed, I attack it full force and my expectations are to have it fixed pretty quickly.And this is not a quick process, so that’s been a struggle just understanding that I really don’t have control over time.”
However, Vondie also pointed out that the work is very rewarding as well.She stated, “As I mentioned before, I have been a part of volunteer activities throughout my adult life – March of Dimes, United Way, church – all of those types of things. But as far as volunteering, this has been the most fulfilling and rewarding as well as stressful thing that I have ever done.Just knowing and understanding that I have been able to give a ‘voice’ for the children and hopefully helped them to end up in a safe living environment.”
Besides serving as a CASA volunteer, Vondie is a great supporter of the local CASA agency, Child Advocates of Northeast Oklahoma, and currently serves on the board of directors for the organization.
Vondie also is a ready spokesperson for the work of CASA.She shared, “What I say when someone asks about CASA is that I work full time and do this; and it isn’t always easy, but the reward far outweighs anything else.And, you know, at this point there’s just too many children that need people to ‘give back’ so they can ‘give forward.’”
Vondie truly has a heart for this work and she has a great intuitive sense about what is really going on in a case. She approaches this work wanting to do the best job she possibly can.
Advocate Coordinator for Ottawa and Delaware Counties
We are grateful to Vondie and the other CASA volunteers who advocate for abused and neglected children in northeast Oklahoma.Please join us in thanking Vondie for her service to the children in foster care in Ottawa County.
February Parenting Tips
During the month of February, CANO will be featuring tips on "Showing Love to Your Children" and "Teaching Children How to Show Love to Others".
Check our CANO Facebook site (https://www.facebook.com/CANO4Kids/) daily to find some great reminders on ways we can show love to our kids during the ever-increasing "busy-ness" of our lives.
Showing Love to Your Children
February (the “love” month) is a great time to remember to emphasize showing love to our children on a daily basis. The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) provides some great reminders for parents in their website article, “Showing Love for Your Child Tips” (article LINK).
To remind families of a variety of ways we can show love to our children, CANO has written an Op-Ed article with tips and creative ideas to underscore the importance of demonstrating our love for them both physically and verbally. From using positive and encouraging words to simply saying, "I love you", parents need to reassure children of their love and acceptance on a continual basis.
To read the full Op-Ed piece, visit our website: LINK .
More CASA Volunteers Needed!
Do you know someone who would make a good advocate and mentor to an abused and neglected child in foster care? If so, please encourage them to sign up for our CASA Training Classes, so they can learn how to be a "CASA Superhero" and help make a difference in the life of an abused child!
CASA Training Classes
Mondays, 9:00 AM-4:30 PM / Feb. 26, Mar. 5, 19, 26
Grove Public Library, 1140 NEO Loop, Grove
To register, contact:
Gayle Hanson, Training Coordinator
email@example.com / 785-623-6955 or 918-923-4570
For more information, visit: www.cano-casa.com/volunteer
CANO in the Spotlight
Recently, Child Advocates of Northeast Oklahoma (CANO) has been highlighted through interviews with Ranger Roofing and the KGLC radio station in Miami, OK.
Ranger Roofing of Oklahoma is a local roofing contractor that gives back to the community by raising awareness about various social issues in the Tulsa area and throughout the state by promoting non-profit and non-governmental organizations that work to help alleviate some of the issues. This month Ranger Roofing is promoting the work of Child Advocates of Northeast Oklahoma on their website through an interview with our agency. Use this LINK to read the full CANO interview.
Also, Angela Henderson, CANO Executive Director, has been interviewed several times on the air with Mike Woodruff, the KGLC station manager. Use this LINK to the CANO News webpage to hear a portion of one of the interviews with Angela sharing about CASA and our volunteers as well as another interview where she shares about how to monitor and protect your children's digital lives.
Miami Pilot Club Learns about CASA
A noon-time presentation was given by Angela Henderson, CANO Executive Director, to the members of the Pilot Club in Miami, OK. An audience of about 15 ladies listened as Angela shared about what CASA volunteers do to advocate for abused and neglected children throughout northeastern Oklahoma.
Let us know if you have an organization that would like to hear about the important work our CASA volunteers do in advocating for children who need a loving, caring adult to help them navigate through a difficult period in their lives.
While traveling around northeast Oklahoma, watch for the new CASA ads on the back of two area Pelivans - one in Ottawa County and one in Delaware County.
Wishing you and your loved ones
a Happy Valentine's Day!
The CANO Staff
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Child Advocates of Northeastern Oklahoma is a court-appointed special advocate program headquartered in Claremore Oklahoma. We serve Rogers, Mayes, Craig, Ottawa, and Delaware Counties.
Headquarters: Miami Office:
200 S. Lynn Riggs 103 E. Central, Suite 500