Friends of CASA, an organization that supports CASA of the Tri-Peaks, is holding its annual Christmas Tea Party on Thursday, from 6 p.m. until 8 p.m. at the First National Bank Community Center in Paris.

The party is open to girls ages four to fourth grade. Girls planning to attend should bring along hygiene products or puzzles for all ages, journals and pens, gloves, hats coloring books and crayons for boys or girls. Suggested hygiene products include shampoo, conditioner, body wash, toothbrushes, toothpaste, hair brush or other hair products.

The items will be distributed to children in foster care.

The event includes dinner, games, crafts, a story time, photo opportunities, a chance to visit with Santa Claus and other special guests.

CASA of the Tri-Peaks is also seeking Christmas sponsors for foster children in Logan County.

For the past several years, Barbi Yarnell and Tracy Richey, co-chairs of the Logan County Friends of CASA, have been helping to ensure the children in foster care have gifts at Christmas.

The local Department of Humans Services office gathers the Christmas wish lists the children and/or their foster parents have filled out. Yarnell and Richey coordinate sponsors that will either provide a monetary donation or gift cards to purchase the toys, games, etc. and sponsors that actually go out and purchase the items.

All of the toys, games, bikes, clothing, shoes, etc. are then gathered at a local church and accounted for by Yarnell and Richey. Then, DHS staff pick all of the presents up and deliver them to the children before Christmas day.

If you are interested in sponsoring a child or children, please call or text Barbi Yarnell at 479-650-0736 or by e-mail at yarnellbarbi@yahoo.com or Tracy Richey at 479-847-5006 or email at trichey@parisschools.org

CASA of the Tri-Peaks is a non-profit 501c3 charitable organization founded in 2004 and is governed by a volunteer Board of Directors. Its tax exempt ID number is 86-1114641.

Its mission is to provide court appointed volunteer advocates for abused and neglected children who are involved in the court system, and to educate the community regarding its responsibility for its most vulnerable children. There are four staff members, 12 volunteer board members, and 34 volunteer advocates serving Arkansas’ 15th Judicial District (Logan, Scott, Yell, and Conway counties).

CASA volunteers provide a voice for children in foster care who have been abused or neglected and came in to foster care through no fault of their own. CASA volunteers visit the children, work with Department of Human Services caseworkers, talk with parents and foster parents, medical professionals, therapists and counselors, and school teachers.

They provide a written report to the judge, attend court hearings and testify as to how the children are doing in their placements and at school. CASA advocacy focuses on the best interests for the children.

Currently there are 281 children in foster care in the Arkansas 15th Judicial District and 96 of these children are from Logan County.