C/SARA Foundation Needs Poker Run to be a Success - KTEN.com - No One Gets You Closer

C/SARA Foundation Needs Poker Run to be a Success

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ARDMORE, OK- Speaking of protecting your children, the C/SARA Foundation in Ardmore takes great pride in doing that.  It's a non profit organization, but that group just found out it's among so many others about to run out of money after 41% of their funding was cut.  Meredith Saldana has more on what you can  do to help.     

C/SARA was established in 1991.     

It stands for Crisis Support And Resource Association.     

Their children's advocacy center in Ardmore offers a safe place for children who have been victims of so many types of abuse.     

Last year they served 217 kids in their 5 county area and the state of Oklahoma reported more than 5,000 children statewide fell victim to abuse last year alone.     

C/SARA was started to help children in those unthinkable situations.

It's a place where children can feel safe, in an environment much like a home.  

It's all part of a process to cut back on any extra, unnecessary trauma to the child.

Executive Director Sissy Burge says, "We have an observation room so the investigative team sits in the observation room and can view the interview, as it's being conducted. Through a closed circuit television they can hear, see everything that's going on while the interviewer is interviewing the child."

Children can sit on a couch and be interviewed one time by a forensic interviewer.

Meanwhile, they're being watched from several different angles by police, DHS and other agencies.  

"All of the agencies are able to get one story at one time and to find the truth," says Burge.

But the foundation recently found out that an Oklahoma Supreme Court decision will cut the agency's budget by 41%.     

That's a budget cut of about $112,000.

"When I sat down with the staff and told them I was like, okay you guys have to hang in here with me. I mean whatever it takes, we're gonna do whatever it takes to diversify our funds."

Sissy Burge says their foundation is now at the mercy of the legislators as they wait and hope that another bill will pass to reinstate their funding.     

For now, they're exploring other financial avenues, looking for grants and hoping for donations.

They are holding their annual poker run on Saturday, April 10th.     

Of course the money raised from entrance fees will go to the non-profit organization.

If you would like to donate you can visit the C/SARA web site at:

http://www.csarafoundation.org/donations.htm

If you would like more information on the poker run you can email Becca Harris at becka_csara@sbcglobal.net or call Harris at (580) 226-7283.

-Meredith Saldana, KTEN News