Literacy is so much more than just being able to decipher the written word: it is an important key to child—and adult—success. Reading skills open doors of discovery for young minds and create conditions for truly meaningful expression and communication. These skills support abilities in problem solving, relationship building, and creativity, all of which are vital to well-being.”

Jerry Bruce, Director

The Office of the Child Advocate (OCA) recognizes that while placing a child in foster care is sometimes a necessity, it also creates additional trauma for that child. This trauma, coupled with other adverse childhood experiences, can have lifelong effects and greatly impact the child’s physical and mental health. The child welfare system as a whole is interested in more prevention efforts—whether primary, secondary, or tertiary. OCA supports these efforts, as it can reduce the trauma a child may experience as well as the resulting effects of that trauma. Each of the Get Georgia Reading Campaign’s four pillars can help to prevent a family or child needing to engage with the child welfare system.

In conjunction with The Summit: Georgia’s Child Welfare Conference, hosted annually in partnership with Georgia’s Division of Family and Children Services (DFCS) and Georgia’s Supreme Court Committee on Justice for Children, OCA organized a book drive for children in foster care. State agencies, attendees, and others are invited to provide books for children of all ages leading up to and during The Summit. The books are then distributed throughout the state to be used in DFCS offices, juvenile court waiting rooms, or gifted directly to children in foster care. The goal of these book drives is to support literacy and healthy development, as well as provide an opportunity for fun and comfort for children in foster care.

OCA is honored to be a part of the Campaign and to promote its four pillars in an effort to develop and support healthy individuals and communities. These supportive efforts are a critical part of preventive services and can influence more positive outcomes over lifetimes to come.

To learn more about OCA, visit their website.