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Child Crisis Center serves despite pandemic BY ALISON BAILIN Tribune Guest Writer


or more than 43 years, Child Crisis Arizona has served the Valley’s vulnerable children and families and is committed to ending child abuse and neglect through prevention, education and intervention programs. CCA offers emergency shelters for children, teen moms and their babies, group home for teens in the foster care system, foster care and adoption services, as well as community-wide parenting classes, workshops, support groups and early education programs for low-income families. Since 1977, Child Crisis Arizona has positively affected over 60,000 children and families. “While many know our Phoenix location, we actually have eight classrooms at our Mesa Early Education Center, which is located at 817 N. Country Club

Drive,” said CEO Torrie Taj. “Here, we currently serve 152 children in Mesa through our Early Education Program and will be serving an additional 28 children in preschool. The preschool classrooms are brand new and were just about to open when COVID-19 hit. We estimate that we will be serving 150 families when our preschool classrooms are fully enrolled.” Amid COVID-19, CCA has had to suspend on-site early education programming and in-home visits with foster families. Despite this challenge, however, the organization is still �inding ways to serve families in the community with hot meals and resources served curbside. In June alone, CCA will reach more than 6,000 adults and children, thanks to help from local leaders. According to Taj, through local spon-

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Helping out with the curbside meal service for needy families are, from left, Child Crisis Center CEO Torrie Taj, Wilde Wealth founder Trevor Wilde and Backyard Tacos operations director Jesse Schwarz. (Special to the Tribune)

Children’s Cancer Network has back-to-school drive TRIBUNE NEWS STAFF


he Chandler-based Children’s Cancer Network is helping parents deal with back-to-school costs. For most children, back-to-school season means new shoes, new clothes, a new backpack and excitement about the year ahead. But for families of kids �ighting cancer, the expenses of going back to school may put a damper on the season. Like the physical and emotional effects of pediatric cancer, the �inancial impact can be devastating, too. In many cases, household income drops, as one parent must quit work in order to care for the child. Meanwhile, expenses increase dramatically: According to a study from the American Childhood Cancer Organization, 60 percent of U.S. families reported spend-

The Children’s Cancer Network, which serves families in Mesa and throughout the region, is collecting school supplies to help families whose budgets are strained by the cost of caring for a child with cancer. (Special to the Tribune)

ing as much as $10,000 annually on transportation, meals away from home,

childcare and other non-medical costs during their child’s treatment.

“For these families, back-to-school season is a real �inancial burden,” said Patti Luttrell, executive director for Children’s Cancer Network, a Chandler-based nonpro�it organization that serves Arizona families facing pediatric cancer. “Our goal is to ease that burden and give kids everything they need to start the year off right.”

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Mesa Tribune: Northeast 06-21-2020  

Mesa Tribune: Northeast 06-21-2020  

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