Poshard Foundation Receives $5,000 Grant from Ameren Illinois
(Carterville, IL | December 18, 2018)

The Poshard Foundation for Abused Children recently received a $5,000 grant from Ameren Illinois to support children in southern Illinois through the Beds for Kids and Toys for Kids programs.

"Thank you to Ameren Illinois for your concern for abused, abandoned, and neglected children in southern Illinois. Every year Ameren has been there to support community charities in our region and has graciously donated thousands of dollars to children in crisis," said Jo Poshard, Executive Director of The Poshard Foundation for Abused Children. "This grant to our Foundation will help buy beds for those children, many of whom are sleeping on floors or cots, and who are not getting a good night's sleep. The funds will also provide toys for children who would otherwise not be receiving gifts over the holidays and are not on anyone's Christmas list."

The grant is two-fold with part of the grant providing beds to abused, abandoned, and neglected children in Southern Illinois. These children have often lost everything in situations of domestic violence or where one or more parents are incarcerated. "Beds for Kids" helps abused children in southern Illinois, placed in foster care or under the protection of a family member, feel as comfortable as possible.

The other portion of the grant will distribute toys to children in need during the holiday season. "Toys for Kids" allows agencies to provide gifts to children who would otherwise receive no presents for Christmas.

The grant funds were made available through the Ameren Cares program, which connects Ameren Illinois with the communities it serves through charitable giving and volunteering. Tina Gibbs, community relations coordinator for Ameren Illinois, said a key focus of this program is to partner with non-profit organizations like The Poshard Foundation to improve the quality of life in Ameren Illinois' service territory.

"There is no greater way to invest in the future of our communities than to support our children and help them succeed," said Gibbs. "We've had a long-standing partnership with the Poshard Foundation for Abused Children and we're proud to continue this effort so they can help even more children in our communities."

For more information, please contact Jo Poshard, jo.poshard@jalc.edu.

     The Poshard Foundation is pleased to receive from Ameren Illinois their generous donation of $5,000 for holiday gifts for abused children as well as beds for children who have none. Photo L to R: Jason Simac, Ameren Illinois Sr. Manager, Operations, Division VI; Jo Poshard, Director of The Poshard Foundation for Abused Children; Tina Gibbs, Ameren Illinois Community Relations Coordinator

Poshard Foundation Brings Holiday Joy
(Carterville, IL | December 6, 2018)

On Monday, December 10th, social service agencies across Southern Illinois will be visiting The Poshard Foundation for Abused Children at John A. Logan College for one of the largest Christmas toy giveaways in the region. Over 1,700 brand new toys and gifts will be distributed to hundreds of abused, abandoned and neglected children throughout the area. Distribution of the toys will begin at 1:00 p.m. on Monday, December 10th. Toys will be distributed over a two-day period.

Press availability will begin at 1:30 p.m. on Monday, December 10th with agency case workers, Richard Clark of Tri-State Business Equipment, Glenn and Jo Poshard, and Foundation volunteers available for interviews at JALC, Building H, Room H122 (down the hall from the Poshard Foundation office).

For a third year, Richard Clark and Tri-State Business Equipment in Harrisburg, have partnered with the Poshard Foundation to gift new toys, valued at thousands of dollars, to the most vulnerable children in Southern Illinois. Partnering with Tri-State Business Equipment are Ameren Illinois and BlueCross BlueShield. With these donations, over 1,700 toys and gifts will be distributed.

Mr. Clark has an annual Christmas party attended by his customers and friends throughout the tri-state area. Each person attending is asked to bring a new toy to be gifted to an abused child. The children are identified by case workers in the agencies that work with the Poshard Foundation.

"We want to thank Richard Clark for his partnership again this year as well as Ameren, BlueCross BlueShield, and our individual donors. These children were not on anyone's Christmas list but they are now! They are some of the neediest children in Southern Illinois," said Poshard.

Media Note: This is not a public toy giveaway. All of the children receiving gifts have been identified through social service agencies in our region.

     (left to right): Richard Clark of Tri-State Business Equipment , Jo Poshard, and volunteers.

Lifespan Consequence of ACE, Toxic Stress and Trauma
(Carterville, IL | July 17, 2018)

More than 130 professionals who work with children gathered at John A. Logan College in Carterville on July 17, 2018 for a training organized by Prevent Child Abuse Illinois and funded by The Poshard Foundation for Abused Children.

As part of the training, the group viewed a documentary called "Resilience: The Biology of Stress and the Science of Hope" that looks at the science of adverse childhood experiences and a new movement to treat the resulting toxic stress-and even prevent it. Ginger Meyer, clinical director for Children's Medical and Mental Health Resource Network, led the workshop.

Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACE) can have lasting negative effects on individuals. Researchers have recently discovered a biological syndrome caused by abuse and neglect during childhood. The individual may not remember the childhood experience, but the body remembers. Toxic stress can trigger hormones that affect the brains and bodies of children, putting them at a greater risk as adults for disease and behavioral problems that often result in homelessness, prison time and early death. Meyer called adverse childhood experiences "the biggest public health crisis we have ever seen."

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Advocate of the Year Award
(Carterville, IL | April 25, 2018)

Congratulations to Jo Poshard for being awarded Advocate of the Year by the Jefferson County community. On April 25, 2018, Nancy Hulfachor, Volunteer Coordinator for CASA of Jefferson County, presented the award to Jo as Executive Director of the Poshard Foundation for being a vital part of the prevention efforts of abused and neglected children in Illinois and continuing to work relentlessly to heal abused children physically and emotionally.

The Poshard Foundation Announcing 30 Grant Awards to Southern Illinois Agencies Serving Abused and Neglected Children
(Carterville, IL | April 24, 2018)

As part of Child Abuse Prevention Month, Jo Poshard, Director of The Poshard Foundation for Abused Children, will announce grants for $100,000 at a press conference on Monday, April 30, 2018, 1:00 p.m. in the Board Conference Room at John A. Logan College.

A total of 30 grants will be given to Southern Illinois agencies to be used specifically for services directly dealing with the abused, abandoned, and neglected children in our region. Those organizations are: Baptist Children's Home, Carmi; Boys & Girls Club of Carbondale; Cairo Women's Shelter; Caritas Family Solutions, Carterville; Caritas Family Solutions, Mt. Vernon; CASA of Franklin County; CASA of Jefferson County; CASA of Saline County; CASA of Williamson County; Centerstone; Children's Home and Aid, Herrin; Children's Medical and Mental Health Resource Network, Anna; Department of Child and Family Services, Southern Region; Family Counseling Center, Golconda; Franklin-Williamson County Child Advocacy Center; Healthy Families Illinois - Shawnee Health, Carterville; Hoyleton Ministries, Hoyleton; Lutheran Social Services of Illinois, Marion; Lutheran Social Services of Illinois Prison & Family Services, Marion; Mentors4Kids, Harrisburg; Perry-Jackson Child Advocacy Center, Pinckneyville; Pregnancy Matters, Carbondale; Southern Illinois Coalition for the Homeless; Spero Family Services, Mt. Vernon; The Amy Center, Mt. Vernon; The Guardian Center, Carmi; The Night's Shield Children's Crisis Shelter, West Frankfort; The Women's Center, Carbondale; Two Rivers Child Advocacy Center, Anna; and Williamson County Family Crisis Center, Herrin.

Agency representatives will comment briefly on their grant projects and will be available to the press.

Jo Poshard noted, "The theme for April 2018 Child Abuse Month is 'Everyone has a role to play.' Child abuse is above the state average in 20 of our Southern Illinois counties. We need to build awareness in our communities and recognize that getting involved can change a child's life forever."

Glenn and Jo Poshard, co-founders of the Poshard Foundation, believe every child deserves a safe person, a safe place, and a safe community. Unfortunately, that is not the reality for many of our children in Southern Illinois. The abused, neglected, and abandoned ones are those the Poshard Foundation seeks to help. Whether it is by providing counseling, cribs, therapeutic camps, supplies for college-bound foster children, or training for the prevention of violence against children, the Foundation strives to make a difference in young lives.

For more information contact The Poshard Foundation for Abused Children at (618) 985-2828 ext. 8564 or email joposhard@jalc.edu.

Please help us raise money for abused, abandoned, and neglected children in Southern Illinois, with a secure credit/debit card donation.