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Nonprofit Spotlight: Fostering Hope in Kentucky’s children

The Foster Care Council works to enrich the lives of children in Kentucky’s foster care system

By Lorie Hailey

The Foster Care Council was founded by Cassie Slone in 2012 with the mission of meeting the needs of children throughout Kentucky who have been placed in the foster care system after being removed from their homes due to abuse, abandonment or neglect.

The Foster Care Council works to provide funding for clothing, individualized tutoring, summer camp and other enrichment activities for Kentucky’s foster children.

“We strive to help this population of children become strong, healthy adults and not a statistic,” said Slone.

Slone continues to lead the organization as executive director. The staff consists of Business Development Director Lindy Hester and Fundraising and Special Events Coordinator Cindy Guckian.

Here, Slone provides more information about the mission of the organization and how its work is changing the lives of children.

The Lane Report: When you meet someone new, how do you describe your organization?
Cassie Slone: As an organization that is changing lives. We provide resources to foster children in Kentucky that the state does not. We work alongside foster parents and caseworkers to provide opportunities these kiddos otherwise might not have. We provide avenues for them to explore talents and passions through extracurricular activities. We provide academic assistance to build confidence in the classroom, which in turn changes attitudes, not to mention providing options for future higher learning. We provide youths with life skills that will help them succeed when they age out of the system. We are the only organization in Kentucky that provides these services to foster families at no charge.
TLR: Tell us about your upcoming Tee it Up for The Kids Golf Scramble.
CS: This fall, we are presenting our annual Tee It Up For The Kids! Last year we were able to raise $35,000 at this event thanks to our sponsors and participants. This year’s four-person best-ball scramble will be held Oct. 11 at Griffin Gate Golf Resort. We are expecting 100 players. Teams and sponsorships are still available (teeitup2021.com).

TLR: How can the business community help support your organization? What are the sponsorship opportunities?
CS: We have an annual giving/networking campaign, Champions for Children, and also accept donations of gently worn clothing to our “unique boutique,” Studio ThriftyFor the Kids. Or become a sponsor at one of our fundraising events. In addition to the golf scramble, we have the Lasso-a-Dream Western Gala. The next Lasso-a-Dream event is scheduled for April 29, 2022.

TLR: How do you get people involved in your mission?
CS: If you have a heart for supporting foster children, please follow us on social media (Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn – @fostercarecouncil) and subscribe to our email list at thefostercarecouncil.com. You can find information about all the opportunities to get involved through these avenues of communication.

TLR: What recent achievement are you proud of?
CS: One of our proudest achievements would be opening Studio ThriftyFor the Kids in 2018. To provide children who have possibly never been able to go shopping with the opportunity to pick out “cool” clothes and shoes and then see their self-esteem change within an instant is truly a humbling experience. It is simply priceless to be able to provide something so special for them that we often take for granted.

TLR: Is there anything else you’d like to say about The Foster Care Council?
CS: The Foster Care Council literally changes the lives of this often-forgotten population of children. Providing educational and social opportunities changes the trajectory of one’s life. We have witnessed first-hand how one-on-one tutoring changed one student from “hating” school and thinking she would never graduate because she wasn’t smart enough to now being on the dean’s list at the University of Pikeville, studying to be a teacher. Opportunities change lives, and we strive to do that one child at a time.

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