People of faith are called by that faith
to speak for all children.
May 18, 2010
MAY IS NATIONAL FOSTER CARE MONTH
Support the Celebration of Excellence!
400 graduating foster care children need your help.
Make a donation of gift cards
Make a donation to the scholarship fund
Volunteer your services for and at the event on June 9
Read more about this opportunity in the article below. Let your generosity and hospitality be the difference in a child's life.
Our sincere thanks to all who joined us Thursday, May 13, for ICM's Welcome & Rededication Celebration "Coming Together for All Children." Please stay tuned for a pictorial of the evening on our Web site.
ICM CALLS UPON FAITH COMMUNITIES TO SUPPORT THE "CELEBRATION OF EXCELLENCE"
The "Celebration of Excellence" is an annual statewide event that honors and recognizes youth in Georgia's foster care system who will graduate from high school, vocational school, GED programs or college. This year's event will celebrate some 400 foster care youth and will be held Wednesday, June 9, 2010, at 6:30 p.m. at Georgia State University's Rialto Center for the Arts in downtown Atlanta. Victoria Rowell will be the keynote speaker.
HOW CAN YOU HELP?
ICM is calling upon faith communities to help us support this joyous occasion by participating in the following ways:
1. Start a $1 per memberscholarship campaign at your faith community to help give scholarships to graduating foster care children who will be attending college or technical / vocational school. Less than three percent of foster care children go to college after graduating high school. (The scholarships will be given to the post-secondary institution on behalf of the student.)
2. Donate gift cards in increments of $25 to help students with purchasing supplies they will need for school, work and home. Please remember that children who turn 18 while in foster care are said to have "aged out" and transition into independent living status. Our goal is to give each of the 400 children a gift card.
3. Join the COE Volunteers Team and commit to assisting at the event on June 9.
4. Come to the celebration and give love and support to these well-deserving youth. It is free and open to the public.
Let us help make June 9, 2010, an especially positive and memorable day. Please contact Pamela Perkins at 770-498-2141 or send an e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org to sign up as a volunteer and to find out more information about the $1 per member scholarship campaign and donating gift cards.
CHILD PROTECTION - FOSTER CARE:
Digital Stories from the Field
The National Resource Center for Permanency and Family Connections (NRCPFC) at the Hunter College School of Social Work, A Service of the Children's Bureau, has developed this new web site. This site represents NRCPFC's on-going work to create digital stories with key stakeholders in the child welfare field. These stories literally bring the voices and experiences of those most affected by the child welfare system into the room.
More than forty stories represent the perspectives of former foster youth, social workers, supervisors, parents, family partners, advocates, judges and CASA workers. Current stories cover a wide range of topics including permanency, adoption, reunification, youth development, the importance of parent and youth voice in case planning, and the role of courts and the judicial system in planning for and with families.
JUVENILE JUSTICE MATTERS:
U.S. Supreme Court Rules on Juveniles Serving Life without Parole
Article below from npr.org, May 17, 2010:
The U.S. Supreme Court ruled Monday that it is an unconstitutionally cruel and unusual punishment to lock up teenagers for life without any chance of parole - if they didn't kill anybody.
The 6-to-3 ruling could open the prison doors for at least some of the 129 people serving life terms without parole for non-homicide crimes committed when they were under 18. [More "Supreme Court Rejects Life without Parole for Some Juveniles"]
Access the Court's written opinion here.
United Methodist Church Holds Week of "Faith and Action" for Juvenile Justice Reform, May 16-22
The week of May 16-22 the United Methodist Church will hold a Week of Faith and Action, focusing on the needs of the juvenile justice system.
- The Blessing of Children: Spend some or all of your prayer time praying for the protection and restoration of our youth and the safety of our communities
- Faith Call-In Day: People of all faiths can call their elected leaders through the Capitol switchboard (202-224-3121) and urge them to support needed reforms such as the Juvenile Justice and Deliquency Prevention Act (JJDPA) and the Youth Promise Act.
- Letter Writing Campaign: The chair of the House Education and Labor Committee is Rep. George Miller (D-CA). The United Methodist Church is urging Rep. Miller to expeditiously move the JJDPA and Youth Promise Act bills through his committee.
ICM encourages all communities of faith to establish a week of Faith in Action for Juvenile Justice Reform in Georgia. As a member of the JUSTGeorgiacoalition, ICM has been working with JUSTGeorgia on Juvenile Code Reform. Please visit our home page and the Juvenile Justice section of our Web site for more information on this issue and the effort.
SPIRITUAL WITNESS FOR CHILDREN
One of the most important things faith communities can do for children is to pray for them.
Every child is a child of God and deserves justice and compassion. Every child deserves our prayers.
ICM encourages every faith community to become a spiritual witness for children. Hold a worship service in your church, synagogue, mosque or temple and invite others to join in praying for the well-being of all children.
ICM Mission and Goals
The Interfaith Children's Movement was formed in 2001 as an intentional association of individuals and communities of faith from all religious traditions.
The Interfaith Children's Movement strives to be a voice for all Georgia children, but especially the poor and marginalized whose voices are often unheard.
ICM works closely with Georgia's policy-oriented child advocacy organizations, such as:
Voices for Georgia's Children,
The Barton Child Law and Policy Clinic at Emory University,
Prevent Child Abuse Georgia and
A Future.Not a Past. (child prostitution prevention).
These organizations set the agenda for our advocacy work for children.
ICM's faith community members provide a megaphone to the legislature about what needs to be done for children.
EVENTS, TRAINING AND SERVICE OPPORTUNITIES
ATLANTA INTERFAITH LEADERS FELLOWSHIP HOSTS A "CELEBRATION OF INTERFAITH WORK"
Date: Sunday, June 6, 2010 Time: 3:00 p.m. - 6:00 p.m.
Location: Sultan's Turkish and Lebanese Restaurant, 5920 Roswell Road, Sandy Springs, GA 30328
Imam Plemon El-Amin shares information about the diverse programs of the Interfaith Community Institute.
Melody Moezzi speaks about the proposed 2011 Atlanta Faith Festival and the goals of the 100 People of Faith Atlanta Chapter.
Learn more about and have an opportunity to sign up to help various interfaith organizations.
ICM will be participating in this event. Come out and visit our table!
Dinner will be served. Cost of dinner is $20.
Guests are welcome, but space is limited. Please RSVP to Bassem Fakhoury at (email@example.com)by Tuesday, June 1.
SOS (Survivers of Suicide)
One out of every five Latino youth will try to commit suicide before age 20. Currently, there isn't a support group in the state of Georgia for young people survivors of this tragedy.
A group of volunteers of "Renovacion Conyugal" have received training from SPAN-GA, a prestigious organization that helps suicide victims and families, and we will soon be announcing our first support group meeting for those in need.
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Doing what we are called to do.
Doing what we are able to do.
Doing what must be done!