Welcome from new Executive Director, Raine Howe
Thank you for taking a few moments to read this message. I would like to introduce myself and provide some background information so that we may begin to get acquainted.
As most of you know, the Polly Klaas Foundation (PKF) has been providing vital programming and services to the field of missing children for nearly 20 years. The Foundation is known both locally in Petaluma and nationally as one of the most highly regarded child-find agencies in the world. My being brought on board to PKF will not change any of the program-related aspects of the organization. But rather my role is to keep our remarkable programs alive, to ensure they continue to be funded and to more fully illuminate to the public the operations of the foundation and how we go about the important work we provide to the field.
For example: Many people may not realize since our inception nearly 20 years ago, the Polly Klaas Foundation has helped over 8,500 families find missing children using the coordinated efforts of our experienced staff in tandem with volunteers across the nation. Did you know that working together in communities, with law enforcement and policy makers, we continue to be a leading agency in making America safer for all children?
From the moment our phone rings, PKF staff and volunteers become involved in helping to bring children home safely. Here is how it works:
Referrals come into our 24 hour hotline either from families of missing children, other child find agencies, social services or law enforcement.
Once a referral is received, PKF staff sets to work completing intake information then begins the task of amassing thousands of volunteers who are at the ready to receive flyers on a missing child via email and fax to post those missing child flyers across the nation.
Additionally that missing child is posted on our website and we begin to take part in a national community of people committed to helping to find that child.
Perhaps the most important service we provide is supporting the family of a missing child in one of the most difficult situations they have ever faced. Our professional and compassionate staff is here 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to help families navigate the ins and outs of working with their communities, with law enforcement, and sometimes the media, as a search for their child is underway.
We continue to support these families throughout the search and continue to follow-up with them once their child is returned home, or in some cases provide support indefinitely. Our goal is to deliver these services while instilling hope in the hearts of families who are experiencing the frightening event of a missing child.
Beyond the work of helping to bring missing children home; is the educational component to our programs which help children from going missing in the first place. These include participation in safety fairs and providing important tools online or in print such as Safety Kits to be completed by families which has information to share with their children on remaining safe and being aware of how to avoid abductions. These kits are available for schools, communities conducting safety fairs and to the general public. Simply call us or order them online.
In a Snapshot – The Polly Klaas Foundation’s Programs and Services Include:
- 24 hour hotline open 7 days a week to assist families, law enforcement and communities in locating missing children
- National outreach with thousands of volunteers who assist in posting flyers across the country when a child goes missing
- Support for public policies and implementation of child safety programs such as the Amber Alert.
- Safety kits to teach parents and children about how best to avoid abduction
- Support for families when a child is abducted
- Resources for runaways and their families
It is a great privilege to serve the Polly Klaas Foundation as their new Executive Director. The organization has been close to my heart since its inception nearly 20 years ago. My daughter was born the same year as Polly and we lived in the neighboring town when the tragic disappearance of Polly occurred. The kidnapping and murder of this beautiful young girl gripped the community of Petaluma and ultimately our nation and the world. She was everyone’s child in everyone’s town and we collectively grieved her loss and vowed to do everything in our power to help prevent something like this from ever occurring again.
Polly’s story was the catalyst, and remains the inspiration, for the work of the Polly Klaas Foundation. Our model for coming together to look for one of our own has become the standard for communities across our nation when a child goes missing in their neighborhood. We are still a Petaluma-based nonprofit who continues to provide meaningful services to hundreds of families across the nation every year.
We would not be here without the generous support of local and national donors, volunteers, law enforcement and people just like you. Thank you for keeping Polly’s story close to your hearts. The PKF staff and I look forward to partnering with you as we continue to help keep America’s children safe for generations to come.
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ABOUT POLLY KLAAS FOUNDATION
The Polly Klaas Foundation helps find missing children, prevents children from going missing, and promotes laws like Amber Alert that help keep children safe.
We never share, loan or sell your personal information to anyone. The Polly Klaas® Foundation is a 501(C)(3) charitable organization. Donations are tax deductible.
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c. 2013 Polly Klaas® Foundation, 312 Western Avenue, Petaluma, CA 94952
E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org ~ Phone: (707) 769-1334 ~ 24 hour hotline: (800) 587-4357