VALDOSTA – Bobby Bones, radio and television personality, has been tapped to headline the Third Annual Anchored in Hope dinner.
The event, benefitting the Children's Advocacy Center of Lowndes County, is scheduled for March 16 at Highgrove Farm, 4701 Knights Ferry Road. Doors open 5 p.m. for table sponsors and 5:30 p.m. for individual ticket holders.
The CAC selected Bones to be the keynote speaker due to his childhood and his ability to overcome bullying, said Ashley Lindsay, agency executive director. She called his "story of perseverance, hard work and dedication" inspirational.
Bones is an author, artist and comedian who is an "American Idol" mentor and the "Dancing with the Stars" season 27 winner, according to his biography. He is the host of "The Bobby Bones Show" and the Circle Network's "Opry" host, his biography states.
Proceeds from Anchored in Hope will go to CAC services such as forensic interviews, trauma therapy, family advocacy and prevention and education, Lindsay said.
"We know that sexual and physical abuse has not stopped during the pandemic, instead it has thrived. As our community deals with the coronavirus and its impact, we have continued to provide services to current and new children and families through tele-health platforms and in-person services," Lindsay said.
"Nevertheless, without our annual fundraising efforts and in-person meetings with generous donors, we face an even more unprecedented loss of fundraising support from individuals and corporations in our community. These special people and businesses have been the lifeblood of our CAC for over 20 years. ... We think moving forward with our event is one way to bring a sense of unity and spread awareness in a socially responsible and safe way."
To help one child with his or her safety and mental health, it takes about $1,490, Lindsay said, noting it costs the CAC an estimated $800,000 to annually serve children and their families.
With the assistance of donors, she said the agency can impact more than 500 children per year.
"We have also begun to help our families who are participating in therapy services and making sure their children get the help they need with utilities assistance when they are directly impacted by COVID," Lindsay said. "The CAC is always looking for ways to help our non-offending caregivers improve their situation and help ease the burden associated with abuse. We are only able to do the work at the center because of our tremendously generous community and their commitment to improving abuse survivor’s lives."
COVID-19 precautions for Anchored in Hope include socially distanced tables, a mask requirement when not eating, a restriction on sharing objects and sanitizing stations. Entry times will also be staggered.
Sponsorships, ranging from $2,000-$8,000 are available. Individual admission tickets are $100 and are available until March 9. Visit https://bit.ly/3jisF1o for purchasing.
Call (229) 245-5369, or visit facebook.com/caclowndes, for more information.