The 2015 Givin’ Where I’m Livin’ (GWIL) campaign provides support and publicity for local non-profit charitable organizations competing for GWIL matching funds during the campaign’s Week of Online Giving, April 19-26.
Around Dripping Springs is pleased to feature this series of GWIL non-profit profiles to help publicize their unique missions to the community. We invite you to get to know these wonderful organizers and learn more about the important work they are each doing to enrich our community. Please share their stories, and be sure to donate to your favorite during the Week of Online Giving! Learn more at: http://www.GivinWhereImLivin.org
NOW MEET THE BURKE CENTER FOR YOUTH, WITH FOUNDER CHARLES CAMPISE:
The Burke Foundation, Inc./Burke Center for Youth has been operational since 1973. Forty years ago, Rosemary Burke had a dream. She met Charlie Campise and together they opened a residential treatment center on a ranch in Driftwood, Texas. Rosemary’s dream grew and the Burke Center for Youth expanded to four locations, serving 20 boys at Pathfinders and 150 foster children. The agency was incorporate to serve children from Texas who are emotionally disturbed, learning disabled, abused or neglected, dependent and homeless.
Our mission is to promote healing and inspire hope for children in crisis. For the children who have suffered abuse and neglect, we provide safe and loving environments so they may form healthy relationships and look forward to a brighter future. Our vision is that all children deserve a safe and supportive environment in which to flourish. We seek to rebuild lives and put those we serve on the path to stop the cycle of abuse.
Pathfinders Ranch is our residential treatment center in Driftwood. We serve boys who are currently unable to live in a family setting due to traumatic events. Often the negative experiences they have endured lead to their inability to manage their behaviors effectively. We provide a structured setting where the boys can participate in skill building programs, change negative behaviors and set their feet on a path to rebuild their lives.
In 1990, the Burke Center received our license to operate a Child Placing Agency to support families with a desire to foster children. We operate six offices and service 40 families caring for 120 foster children throughout the state of Texas.
To complete the circle of support for the youth we sere, we also provide foster-to-adopt and matched adoption services to provide permanent, loving homes to Texas children whose own families have had parental rights terminated.
WHAT IS ONE OF THE MOST MEMORABLE THINGS THAT’S HAPPENED?
The most memorable event occurred in the life of David, who came to live here in the 1970’s. He lived at the ranch for five years. David was placed by Child Protective Services (CPS), after being in the Austin state hospital psychiatric ward for three weeks. David was removed from his mother by CPS because she told them that David had started a fire in the attic of the family home.
CPS took immediate custody of David, along with his twin brother and his little sister. David was totally silent in the hospital for the first week. Then he began to speak daily with the morning charge nurse. He eventually told her that his mother lied about him. David described the home to the nurse, who in turn gave the story to David’s psychiatrist the next day. The doctor listened in disbelief. He called a friend who was an Austin police officer. That evening, the police went to David’s former residence and immediately saw there was no second story or attic. The police informed CPS, and David was placed at the Burke Center for Youth within the next five days.
BurkeCntrGoatBoyDavid became our first Eagle Scout. He attended Dripping Springs High School, where he played varsity basketball. David made many friends in the community before graduating high school, and is still friends with a few people who have lived here for years. He went into the Army after graduation, where he earned a degree in computer science. From there, David found employment with the US Department of Defense, where he worked at the highest security level for years, at the Hague in the Netherlands. In 2013, Davide reported that he is still employed with the DOD, and now lives in Koblenz, Germany, with a wife and two sons.
WHAT ARE YOUR ORGANIZATION’S 2015 GOALS?
Our primary goal is to expand our capacity to include housing for boys making the transition from our structured and secure care and the care of foster parents, to life in the real world. Our goal is to create room for 15 more boys in a less restrictive type of housing setting while still being here onsite with a supportive staff.
HOW CAN FOLKS DONATE OR VOLUNTEER?
The main office number is 512-858-4258, and we are open 9am-5pm, weekdays.
PayPal donations are available online at http://www.burkecenterforyouth.org
GIVIN’ WHERE I’M LIVIN’ http://www.givinwhereimliving.org
DS COMMUNITY FOUNDATION http://www.dscommunityfoundation.org