Mentors needed for Guardian Ad Litem kids

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. - There are 1600 kids who are abused, neglected or abandoned in Palm Beach County.

Each of the files on Liz Lieber's desk represents a child.

Liz said, "These are the children who don't have a voice."

Liz' job at Guardian Ad Litem is to find a volunteer to mentor the kids to help them have a more stable life.

Because there aren't enough volunteers, Liz and some of her co-workers volunteer after work, to spend time with the children.

"We get involved in the child's school when there is a need, often kids who come into care there are situations where they change schools, or where there is educational neglect," said Liz.

Many times the staff workers will decide to appear in some of the court hearings, especially when they find out the children have to appear in court before a judge.

" It's a common occurrence to see Liz walk into the courtroom to give the child support.
It's extra hours the staff says they don't mind doing.

Kristin Solomon, who oversees Guardian Ad Litem said, "It's school stability, not passing on to the next grade. Not reaching permanency quick enough. Having multiple placements. Monitoring their medication and their mental health, especially making sure they get services timely."

Until more volunteers can be recruited, workers say they will do what it takes to keep the kids out of trouble.

Kristin said, "If they don't have anyone overseeing them and have that supportive role model for them that is guiding them through, they are likely to be homeless, they are likely to enter the adult criminal system."

Guardian Ad Litem, Fifteenth Judicial Circuit, Palm Beach County
Circuit Director, Kristen Solomon
Assistant Director, Liz Lieber



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