POPLAR BLUFF, MO (KFVS) - A new emergency center just opened in Poplar Bluff to help foster kids who do not have an immediate place to stay.
Great Circle Program Director Michael Turner says the new emergency youth center serves as a 30-day home for foster kids ages 0 to 18 who need a safe place to say.
According to the Department of Social Services, about 1,600 children in the Southeast Missouri were taken into state custody last year.
“83 percent of those were new cases. At this point we can help these kids that are having their lives torn apart. The houses that they are living in are not safe, the people they are living with are not safe. So to be able to provide that for them was a disparity that was really not being met in the area," said Turner.
The center has stocked kitchen, 9 beds, several bathrooms, and a living room with plenty of toys and games.
“Beside the basics like a warm bed, a shower, and nutritious food, Having play time with the kids and building relationships with them. Helping them with homework.”
Forensic Interview Specialist Danielle Cochran talks to foster children that are staying there about their experiences.
She believes the center is a necessary tool to help transform their lives, "It goes from doing everything wrong, not getting love, attention safety or anything like that and just realizing there are people out there that don’t treat them that way, and that there is just so much more hope and comfort and light in the world. They just need someone to show them.”
You can help the emergency youth center by donating diapers, baby formula, baby wipes and children’s clothing of all kinds and dropping it off at 2701 Holly Trail.