By Punch Correspondent Kia Scipio
The Children’s Law Center (CLC) works to give every child in the District of Columbia a solid foundation of family, health, and education. The CLC challenges a bureaucratic system that can get in the way of a child’s basic needs: access to a good education, medical care, and a permanent, loving family. Many of the children that come to the CLC, come with problems that should not need a lawyer. However, it often takes the threat of legal action to ensure that a child does not languish in foster care or that a child’s school provides the proper accommodations for his or her special needs. The CLC helps more than 2,000 children each year and presses for changes in laws and policies to benefit all of DC’s children and families.
On Tuesday, September 17th, the CLC hosted the Helping Children Soar Benefit, co-chaired by Page Lane Smith and Shana Cochrane Smith. The Benefit, held at the Kennedy Center Roof Terrace Restaurant, was an elegant reception for business and social leaders. The focus was on the ripple effect of the CLC’s work—how changing the life of one child helps that child’s family and makes a difference from the entire community. This event draws more than 400 participants from legal, political, business, and philanthropic communities in DC and last year was sponsored by over 140 law firms, corporations, and individuals.
With the help and support of CLC board members, host committee members, and other dedicated fundraisers, the CLC can raise the critical funds necessary to meet the increasing demand for services. From attendees at the Benefit, it is very apparent that the CLC has a number of supporters and members in the community that are dedicated to the work of the organization and the children that it serves.
It was the perfect evening to take in the breath-taking views of the Washington Monument, the Lincoln, Jefferson, and Air Force Memorials from the Roof Terrace of the Kennedy Center, which overlooks the Potomac River. The setting sun was the ideal backdrop for the lovely reception that welcomed all of the attendees. Just the atmosphere alone would be inspiration enough to want to support the work of the CLC. As the inside of the restaurant began to fill and people moved onto the terrace, people’s generosity began to flow. They were purchasing raffle tickets for an iPad Mini, Penn Quarter Experiences, and a getaway to Creighton Farms. The sounds of Federal Samba filled the air and contributed to the excitement and energy of the room.
Over the course of the hour of the actual program, people were engaged. Steptoe & Johnson, LLP was awarded the 2013 Children’s Pro Bono Champion honor, which was then followed by remarks from Betty Washington, an inspiring client of the CLC. The raffle winners were announced, dessert was served, and people continued to mix and mingle well after the conclusion of the event at 9:00 pm.
Cheers to the staff, organizers, and co-chairs—a good evening was had by all!! The CLC is in good hands with these people getting the community interested, involved, and most importantly committed to the care and concern of all children in DC.
Punch Playlist Correspondent Kia Scipio believes that “music makes the people come together.” While she’d love to create a soundtrack to go along with her daily activities, Kia is perfectly happy listening to the music created by others, both known and up and coming, and frequently attends concerts and live shows. She is the Manager of Attorney Professional Development at a national law firm in the DC office. She lives in Maryland. For more on Kia’s musings on all things, including music, her blog is HYPERLINK "http://www.thatsjustmytwocents.com" www.thatsjustmytwocents.com and follow her on Twitter @justkia76.