I have been with CAB since the beginning and I am overwhelmed time and again at how the community of Cleveland County has always met whatever challenges come up to meet the needs of the children and their families involved with Child Welfare.  It goes without saying the happiness that Secret Santa brings to the children, but more importantly it let’s them know they are loved at a time in their lives that they question if anyone cares.  Now that CAB has grown due to the wonderful support of the community we are making a positive impact for children and their families throughout the year.  As the delivery person for CAB, I have the opportunity to see the excitement a child expresses when they find out they get to go to camp or join a team or club.  They feel some normalcy in a not so normal setting.  I have seen the relief on the faces of children and relatives when they find out that they will get to go live with family and stay together rather than in a stranger’s home because CAB can assists with providing beds.  At the Annual Sibling Event which is a day of fun for siblings who are not placed together,  I have witnessed to little boys running and hugging each other with giggles deep from inside and staying so close together for the rest of the day that you would have thought they were glued to each other.  I have also seen teens who are angry and confused with their situations be redirected onto a positive path and not let the system they are caught in destroy them. This is  due to the great Independent Living activities provided throughout the year by CAB.  I could go on and on…….. the simple truth is through support and caring during extremely difficult times in these children’s lives we can give them hope, security, normalcy and love.  Thank you Cleveland County for all of your years of unconditional love and support for our children.

Sue Durrett
Citizens Advisory Board Member