Quick takes – April 23rd

Swooning over crooning

Advocates for Children has had a growing need for volunteers to represent the best interests of abused and neglected children in court cases. The volunteers are known as Court-Appointed Special Advocates, and the need is so great that 300 children are on a waiting list for assistance.

In the face of this need, it’s encouraging to see such great support for the agency and volunteer program through the third annual Crooners for CASA fundraiser. The April 9 event drew a sellout crowd of 350 people to The Commons and raised a record of nearly $60,000 in cash and in-kind donations. That bested last year’s mark by about $10,000, and the inaugural event by about $20,000.

Advocates for Children served almost 650 children in Bartholomew, Jennings and Decatur counties last year, so the need is great. Hopefully, future support is, too. 

Strong foundation for trails

Two of the Columbus Park Foundation’s four main values are quality of life and healthy lifestyles. The foundation clearly demonstrated again its commitment to those two with its recent gift of $150,000 to expand the Clifty Creek section of the city’s People Trails system.

The expansion will add about 3,100 feet to the trail, helping residents better access the city’s far east side through multi-use and side paths.

The Columbus Park Foundation has been an ongoing supporter of the growth of the People Trails system, and the latest gift — made possible by a grant from the Department of Natural Resources — is greatly appreciated and will help the ongoing enhancement of city amenities that improve residents’ quality of life.

Nice thinking

Between 80 and 100 visual communication students from Ivy Tech Community College have been involved in the design concepts of Columbus’ new BikeShare program, which will officially roll out soon. The involvement is part of the school’s annual RETH!NK project, which allows students to work on real-world projects that require higher expectations.

This is a great type of collaboration that channels the students’ creative energy and ideas into a project that will benefit community residents. It’s also a good use of local resources to help city stakeholders and save them money.

Kudos to the students, the school and city departments for their collaborative efforts.