GREENSBURG – For two years, local woman Hope Moore has used donations, networking and lot’s of elbow grease to create backpacks filled with care for children who, through no fault of their own, have been whisked into foster care and Child Protective Services.
Because many of these children have just a few personal belongings thrown quickly into trash bags or grocery sacks as they leave their homes, she calls her mission “No More Trash Bags” and she’s now accepting donations for a third year.
Because of domestic violence, drugs or any of a host of other reasons, these children are removed from their homes by first responders, police officers or social workers (often in the dead of night) to protect them. They are processed quickly to minimize the trauma, but the places they are taken are unfamiliar to them during a very frightening time in their lives.
Moore began helping CPS a few years ago by putting together small backpacks filled with essentials (per each child’s age) – a brand new change of clothings, socks, toothbrushes and toothpaste, and even sometimes a small toy or stuffed animal, just something to get them through a rough time. She has championed the cause because she’s “astounded at the generosity of Decatur County.”
“I thought that after two years, people would find other things to give to,” she said. “But I’ve been wrong. The people in Decatur County have been so generous.”
This year, Moore is feeling the need to “cast a wider net.” Her major sponsors are Jennifer Louden Real Estate and Venue On 3, and their donations pay for the actual backpacks.
“They provided over 100, so this will be our biggest year yet,” Moore explained.
The bags go to caseworkers, law enforcement and emergency assistance agencies so that at the point the child is being removed from the home and placed in foster care, they can get a backpack full of a complete change of clothes and whatever other immediate needs they may have. Items like a toothbrush, toothpaste, brush or comb, shampoo and conditioner, deodorant, all the way to sippy cups and baby bottles and diapers and wipes go to help.
“While it is the responsibility of the foster parents to provide for these children, it’s also unrealistic to think that every foster family has what is needed for any age of child at any time of the day or night,” Moore said.
“And now it’s not just bags that we need,” she said.
Moore also supplies first responders with donated contents separately, just so they have extras on hand for emergencies.
“Our greatest need right now is diapers, bottles and hygiene items,” she finished.
To help “No More Trash Bags,” take your items to drop boxes at Mancino’s in Greensburg, or VIBE/Goin’ Postal in the Dollar General plaza on SR 46 in Greensburg.
Links to “No More Trash Bags” and the Amazon wish list are available at the Facebook page No More Trash Bags Decatur County.
Hope Moore can be reached at email@example.com or at 812-848-4055.