Keeping Pace: More opportunities for helping our children

Two items are worth appending to our Aug. 30 editorial on child safety, “Fall Pace,” which mentioned the Oct. 5 Family Safety Day organized by local fire departments.

Coming sooner, on Sept. 14, is the American Red Cross “Get Ready Day” at Hood River Fire Department, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

We’ll have full details in the Weekend edition, but what’s notable about the event is that the first 100 families to attend will receive free Red Cross emergency kits. Also planned are safety demonstrations, kids’ activities, and materials from local emergency groups, as well as refreshments. There is no need to register: attendees can just show up.

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The sad fact is that many kids are without parents who are in a position to bring them to a forward-looking event such as “Get Ready” of “Family Safety Day.”

Some parents are embroiled in legal troubles, or the kids are secondarily victimized either in custody disputes or adjudication of their parents’ alleged criminal behavior.

If you’re in a position to commit to assisting children caught up in these realities, CASA might be for you. CASA volunteers are trained to look out for the interests of children when they or their families become involved in the court system.

Court Appointed Special Advocates plans an informal informational session Sept. 10 in Hood River; turn to page A2 for details.

With CASA there are time commitments for training and the actual service itself, but it’s a program with a proven record of improving children’s lives. CASA volunteers make a difference in the safety as well as peace of mind of children who have been through traumatic experiences.

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Latest video:

Lawnmower torches Arbor Vitae on Portland Drive

The riding lawn mower driven by Norma Cannon overheated and made contact with dry arbor vitae owned by Lee and Norma Curtis, sending more than a dozen of the tightly-packed trees up in flames. The mower, visible at far right, was totaled. No one was injured; neighbors first kept the fire at bay with garden hoses and Westside and Hood River Fire Departments responded and doused the fire before it reached any structures. Westside Fire chief Jim Trammell, in blue shirt, directs firefighters. The video was taken by Capt. Dave Smith of Hood River Fire Department. Enlarge



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