BETHEL -- St. Thomas' Episcopal Church last Sunday joined Covenant to Care for Children's Adopt a Social Worker (AASW) program. AASW matches faith communities partner with a Connecticut child protective social worker to address unmet needs of area children who are abused, neglected or severely impoverished. Participating social workers volunteer their time to communicate the needs of children on their case loads, and the congregations do their best to fill those needs.
"This church has a big heart for children and youth, and Adopt a Social Worker is going to be a great program for us," Schmidt said.
St. Thomas' "adopted" social worker Robert Murphy in a formal covenant-signing ceremony during worship last Sunday morning. Covenant to Care regional coordinator Meral Prewitt, St. Thomas' priest in charge Norma Schmidt and St. Thomas' AASW liaison Tobi Salottolo joined Murphy in signing the covenant.
To assist children removed from their homes, Salottolo presented Murphy with 12 placement packs containing such items as underwear, sleep shirts, toiletries, books, flashlights and stuffed animals, all provided from parishioners' donations and a $50 gift card donated by Target toward the project. In addition, the church food pantry provided Murphy with baby food for families in need.
Teachers in the church's Sunday School are planning gift baskets to be given to children on Murphy's case load at Easter, Schmidt said.
Photo left to right: Covenant to Care liaison and St. Thomas' Episcopal Church member Tobi Salottolo; the Rev. Norma Schmidt, St. Thomas' priest in charge; Covenant to Care Regional Program Coordinator Meral Prewitt; and child protective social worker Robert Murphy. Photo by John Kwasnik.