Social Eyes by Faye Reeder

Eyes on Arlington: Softball Tournament Sept. 10 helps children find a forever family

A softball tournament at Harold Patterson Sports Complex on Sept. 10 hosted by the Texas chapter of Gift of Adoption will raise money for adoption grants. The tournament is the largest among several events raising money for the $3,500 grants.
A softball tournament at Harold Patterson Sports Complex on Sept. 10 hosted by the Texas chapter of Gift of Adoption will raise money for adoption grants. The tournament is the largest among several events raising money for the $3,500 grants. Courtesy photo

For many couples wanting to adopt children, the expense of the adoption process is an insurmountable hurdle and can result in children not becoming part of a loving, forever family. But there’s hope for these would-be families through the grants funded by a charity called Gift of Adoption.

A softball tournament at Harold Patterson Sports Complex on Sept. 10 hosted by the Texas chapter of Gift of Adoption will raise money for adoption grants. The tournament is the largest among several events raising money for the $3,500 grants.

“Last year at our first tournament, we raised enough money for a grant for one family,” said Adam Pfeil, president of the Texas chapter. “This year our goal is to raise enough money for two families to receive grants.” Since the chapter formed four years ago, it has awarded more than 40 grants totaling around $150,000 that have helped around 50 children find homes.

Two double-elimination tournaments — men’s and coed — will begin at 8 a.m., and championship play is expected to last until around 11 p.m. Winners of each division will take home championship shirts. The fee to enter is $200 per team, and all of the net proceeds will be used to fund grants.

Power hitters beware because there’s a $5 charge each time you hit a home run unless you buy a home run band for $20 that permits unlimited homers without the playful penalty. A fun home run derby — one for guys and one for ladies — will ramp up the fundraising with a $20 entry fee. Derby winners receive a brand-new softball bat.

Families adopting the most vulnerable children and those facing what is possibly their only chance at adoption are given priority status in qualifying for grants. This includes families who are working to unite or keep siblings together and those adopting children with critical medical conditions or kids aging out of orphanages.

“Children who grow up without families suffer unnecessarily and are at great risk of having poor life outcomes,” said Pfeil. “Gift of Adoption is changing all that. By eliminating the financial barriers to adoption, we can give children the one thing they need the most to thrive: a family.”

Pfeil says that the chapter is always looking for new board members and that sponsors are still needed for the tournament. To learn more, contact him at 817-287-1196 or herr_pfeil@msn.com. Additional details are on Facebook at www.facebook.com/GiftofAdoptionTexas.

5K, walk Aug. 27 benefit abused and neglected children

The Community Partners of Tarrant County are back for year 27 of hosting the Communities Against Crime 5K/1-mile race at River Legacy Parks at 8 a.m. Aug. 27. Everyone is invited to participate at the family-friendly event.

The organization works on-site at the Child Protective Services offices to meet immediate and urgent needs of children arriving at CPS, and proceeds from the race help fund the organization’s amazing services.

“The children served by CPS most often come from homes where despair, hopelessness and sometimes violence have replaced love and nurturing. Many times children come into CPS care with nothing but what little clothes they have on. Sometimes they are in dirty and torn clothes; sometimes only a diaper,” said organization spokeswoman Lisa Hill.

The 5K run offers chip timing. The walk participants can walk at their own pace; strollers and dogs are welcome, too. DJ Terry Jackson will be playing old and new hits in all genres. Officers from the hosting police departments will be grilling hot dogs all morning, and chilled beverages and snacks will be served.

The Fort Worth Police Department will be making child ID kits at no charge. Painting activities will entertain the kids along with a chance to meet the horses from Arlington’s mounted police unit. Guests can stroll among exhibitors offering samples to taste, giveaways, and information on keeping your home, family and community safe.

Winners of prizes drawings will take home a gaming system, iPad Mini and gift cards. Hosting the event are police departments from Arlington, Bedford, Benbrook, Fort Worth, Hurst, Mansfield, North Richland Hills, Richland Hills, Tarrant County College District, Tarrant County Sheriff’s Department and UTA.

Community Partners will use the money raised to mange the Rainbow Room, which is stocked with emergency supplies such as food, diapers, baby formula and clothes. In some cases, families are given cribs, gates, car seats and other safety items so that children can remain safe in their homes while CPS works with the family. Even school supplies, backpacks and school uniforms are provided for CPS children as well as gifts on birthdays and Christmas.

Register on-site at 7 a.m. on race day or contact Hill at 817-255-8820 or Lisa.Hill@dfps.state.tx.us.

UTA’s Allan Saxe immortalized in comic book

A brand-new comic book featuring well-known UTA political science associate professor Allan Saxe was released this summer. Created by Saxe’s former student Eliamaria Crawford, the book is called Humans Really Irritate Me.

Crawford, a 2014 graduate and former cartoonist for UTA’s student newspaper The Shorthorn, instantly clued in on Saxe’s witty remarks and recorded his sayings among her class notes. While working for The Shorthorn, she created a one-panel Saxe cartoon for each edition.

Crawford said in a blog post for the UTA Liberal Arts College that once she graduated she realized she still had scores of quotes from Saxe that she hadn’t drawn. Encouraged by earlier success in nationwide contests for comic drawing, she decided to go back to work on her Saxe material and published the book.

In an interview for the UTA Liberal Arts blog, Saxe said about the book, “Frankly I enjoyed it because someone finally captured who I am. There is a certain mindset for sarcasm, and she has it.”

Humans Really Irritate Me can be found on Amazon.

Send your Eyes on Arlington news tips to freeder@star-telegram.com. Also, keep up with local events through our social media page. Please like us at www.facebook.com/SocialEyes.ST. Twitter @FayeReeder

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