NASHVILLE – Tennessee Action Council (T.A.C.) is collaborating with the Tennessee Department of Children Services on a program providing “Love Totes” for children in foster care.

 

Helping Hands, a division of Tennessee Action Council, is providing “Love Totes”, a large gym bag with multiple compartments, pouches, carry strap, and an identification badge with the child’s name to provide them a sense of ownership.  The “Love Totes” replace the standard issued black garbage bag for moving children within the foster system.

 

House Majority Leader Glen Casada stated:  “Helping Hands is a prime example of Tennesseans helping Tennesseans. These children find themselves in extremely difficult circumstances, through no fault of their own, and Helping Hands aids in providing dignity and compassion during dark times.”

 

Helping Hands also provides foster children with personal hygiene items like toothbrushes, toothpaste, and bath products.” I am grateful for the generous gift from Tennessee Action Council to our Department of Children’s Services,” Senator Jack Johnson said.  “I am confident that the Love Totes will be a welcomed possession for kids during their difficult transition into foster care.”

Lisa Brookover, Mid Cumberland DCS Regional Administrator, added:  “DCS appreciates the community support and this generous donation for the children we service.  The ‘Love Totes’ will provide a small sense of normalcy while children and youth are experiencing a difficult time in their lives.”

 

This new program is starting right here in Middle Tennessee in the counties of Williamson, Robertson, and Cheatham.  The team at T.A.C. is working to raise funds for the next step – the Mid Cumberland Region, which includes the eight counties around and including Davidson County. State wide there are approximately 8,553 children currently in the state foster care system.

 

“The truth is, when a child gets moved from one home to the next, and all they have is stuffed into a trash bag, it doesn’t take too many moves until a child begins to think they are simply a piece of trash,” said Rodney Duncan, spokesperson for Tennessee Action Council.  “The “Love Totes” are created to give the children a sense of identity, build a child’s self esteem and help them relocate with something that is theirs.”