The Lubbock City Council and Upbring recently convened to recognize our Foster In Texas (FIT) program with a special proclamation during National Child Abuse Prevention Month. (L-R) Kurt Senske, Upbring CEO; Sheila Patterson Harris, Lubbock City Council member; L. Wood Franklin, Upbring board member; Monica Casey, FIT area director; Lacy Carr, Upbring BeREAL program director; Joy Loper, Upbring Neighborhood House and Health for Friends Clinic director; Donna Perry, Upbring FIT staff member; Mary Lee Franklin, longtime Upbring volunteer.
When the Lubbock City Council and Upbring recently convened to present Upbring with a proclamation during April’s National Child Abuse Prevention Month, councilwoman Sheila Patterson Harris had a little trouble with her first order of business: inviting CEO Kurt Senske to join her.
“You would give me a name I can’t pronounce in front of all these folks,” Patterson Harris laughed.
The remainder of the event went smoothly, with the councilwoman’s passion for protecting the children of Lubbock shining through.
The City Council’s proclamation recognized Upbring’s Foster In Texas (FIT) program. In 2016, FIT connected 118 Lubbock-area children with foster families who said “yes” to giving a child a safe, loving home.
Kurt was joined by Upbring board member L. Wood Franklin, who has a personal, lifelong connection with our mission.
“Not only am I a board member, but I was actually adopted through Upbring,” Wood said. “So, they’ve given me a wonderful family to be part of. Upbring has been part of my entire life, and I love it.”
Wood’s father, Larry, served on Upbring’s board for 15 years. His mother, Mary Lee, served on a local Upbring advisory board. She also made the trip to City Hall.
“Mary Lee is a volunteer extraordinaire. She is the life and heart of our organization on the South Plains,” Kurt said.
He went on to highlight two other Upbring services that directly impact lives in the Lubbock community.
Last year, Upbring Neighborhood House delivered emergency assistance for food, utilities and other essentials to 16,674 people. And Upbring Health for Friends Clinic provided free health care to nearly 1,415 people who could not afford health insurance.
By walking alongside families during difficult times, Upbring helps them focus on creating better lives for their children. Ultimately, we take another step toward our mission to break the cycle of child abuse.
“This is something an organization cannot do alone,” Kurt said. “It takes a public-private partnership with the City of Lubbock and our amazing supporters on the South Plains. Collectively, we will break the cycle of child abuse.”