On Saturday, February 24, members of the Done In A Day committee worked with South Carolina Youth Advocate Program (SCYAP) to provide a luncheon as well as an afternoon of games in a safe and fun environment for foster children and their families. In addition, speaker Kevin Lawrence from Richland County Police Department, known for his role on Live PD, provided some inspirational words for the attendees. Co-chairs Amanda Millen and Emily Timberlake, stepped up and made the event special for all involved. Junior League of Columbia (JLC) shift workers were on hand to help set up and facilitate games for the families.
SCYAP Development Liaison Gail Cole said that while her organization has been partnering with the JLC for many years, this year, their focus has been on the element of fun and play. Says Cole, “In the years past, we have been focused on the health and well -being of our children, but we’ve realized that play is an important part of health and self-esteem.” One special feature was the placement of games like Jenga, Connect Four, Uno and Go Fish on the lunch tables to help foster the atmosphere of playing together as a family. Other games such as four square, corn hole and bubble stations were also set up.
Cole goes on to say, “I would like to thank the Columbia Junior League for making the Fostering Fun event possible. What a special time to get our foster parents and foster children together and remind them how much fun it can be to engage in playing simple games as a family unit. The Junior League also had Kevin Lawrence, from the Richland County Sheriff’s Department, speak to our group. What an engaging and inspiring young man! He took the time to meet with our foster children on an individual basis to talk with them about overcoming obstacles and setting goals for their future. It was a great opportunity to reinforce the message that they can overcome their challenges and with hard work they can do anything they want to do. That is such an important message and we need to repeat that to our foster children on a regular basis.”
About SCYAP: The South Carolina Youth Advocate Program (commonly known as SCYAP) is a private, non-profit organization that supports and facilitates the development and operation of community-based residential and non-residential services for youth and their families. SCYAP believes that children do best when they are with their families and that they should be served in their own homes or in a family setting when out-of-home placement is necessary.