New Creative Department series, “Meeting the Newb“, Part II
Hi again! As you all know, I am new to The Creative Department as a Brand Coordinator. Today, I’d like to introduce my first client, ProKids, a nonprofit organization that advocates on behalf of Hamilton County’s foster children.
I knew I had landed an awesome gig when I learned of our newest pro bono client. We are donating time to ProKids’ marketing and strategy efforts for 2012. It is important to me to “give back” to my community; and I’m thrilled to have the opportunity to lead these efforts on account of CD.
I’m especially pleased with leading ProKids’ account knowing the controversy that surrounds the “working for free” mentality. Here is an AdAge article that shares supporting arguments on why agencies should donate their time and services to nonprofits.
So, what’s the big deal?
This year in Hamilton County, over 2,000 children will be abused and neglected to the point of removal from their homes and placed into foster care. Many assume that the county is taking proper care of these children. The Child Welfare League of America recommends caseloads between 12 and 15 children per worker. Nationwide, the average caseload for a child welfare worker is twice the recommended number.
What many don’t know about the foster care system:
- Children in foster care are 10 times more likely to be abused than children in the general population.
- Less than half of foster children graduate high school, only 38 percent find a job within 18 months of leaving the system, and only one in eight graduates from a four-year college.
- A child is nearly twice as likely to die of abuse in foster care as in the general population.
- Take for instance, the two year old foster child, DeMarcus Jackson of Cincinnati, who was fatality beaten two months ago.
- Almost half of foster children will spend at least two years in care, while almost 20 percent will remain in the system five or more years.
How is ProKids helping the situation?
ProKids was founded in 1981 and is part of the National CASA Association. This private nonprofit ensures Hamilton County’s foster children receive safe, permanent, and nurturing homes.
ProKids recruits and trains volunteers known as CASAs (Court Appointed Special Advocates) to operate as activists for these children. If you’re wondering who becomes CASA’s, check out the “I am for the Child” campaign video from National CASA.
ProKids also provides leadership and education to the community by creating specialized programs such as Building Blocks for children ages 0-3 years old, Steps to Peace (STOP) to address family violence, and CASA University training program.
ProKids recently launched ProKids Young Professionals (PKYP) to provide younger people, with limited time and money, a way to help out. This year, 19,000 children across the U.S. will turn 18 and “age out” of the system without ever finding a permanent home. PKYP members can volunteer to support these young adults’ transition into the “real world” by assisting them with college applications, writing resumes, and apartment hunting. You can also partake in fun networking events like the one pictured above at Arnold’s Bar and Grill.
Ready to Help Out?
Find more ways to get involved by visiting ProKids’ website and stay up-to-date on events and volunteer opportunities by liking ProKids’ facebook page.
Whether you work at an ad agency, law firm, accounting firm, etc. there are many worthy organizations and causes that could benefit from your pro bono services… get out there and make a difference!