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Stand up for an abused or neglected child

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By: Amy Kehm

SUMMERVILLE, S.C. (WCIV) -- The Cass Elias McCarter Volunteer Guardian ad Litem Program in Dorchester County needs you to stand up for an abused or neglected child.

According to Dina Dukes, County Coordinator for Dorchester County, there are more than 4900 children within the program in SC involved in the family court system due to allegations of abuse and neglect.

GAL volunteers help to be the voices for those abused and neglected children so that their voices are heard in the court system. They get to know the child and everyone involved in the child's life, including family, teachers, doctors, social workers and others. They gather information about the child and what the child needs.

"Volunteers are the eyes and ears for the judge," said Dukes. "They give the judge a picture of the case from the child's view. They do this by making recommendations that are in the child's best interest."

Through training, volunteers obtain the skills and knowledge they need to give the judges information to best protect the children in these cases.

New volunteer training will begin in Dorchester County, Tuesday evenings beginning September 11. To inquire, call (843) 875-9842.

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