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Better Together to host informational volunteer luncheon June 29 in greater Tampa Bay region

Better Together, a nonprofit dedicated to families and children, is hosting an informational volunteer luncheon on Saturday, June 29 from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. in Lutz.

Better Together helps parents who are going through a hard time to keep their kids out of foster care, find work and address the root causes of their struggle so that they can reunite as a family with the tools and support system to thrive. With the help of donors and hundreds of volunteers and church communities, Better Together builds lasting support systems that help families cope with hardships – such as job loss, substance abuse, homelessness and jail time – and ensures that children are cared for in a safe home until the family can be reunited.

With roots in Southwest Florida, Better Together serves families in 27 counties across Florida. To date, the program has served over 9,000 children and kept 98% of families together, while helping 45,000 job seekers across 24 states find employment.

State data shows that in 2023, Hillsborough County had the highest number of children in foster care compared to other Florida counties, with 1,918 children in foster care last year. The need for Better Together’s services in the Tampa area is great, and Better Together hopes to connect with more families who are willing to open their hearts to children in need of support.

There are several ways to get involved with Better Together, which include serving as a host family, a job coach or a family mentor. Needed most are volunteer host families to welcome a child, or multiple children, into their homes on a short-term basis while parents work through their temporary crisis. The average stay with Better Together’s help is 45 days, whereas the average stay for a child in the Florida foster care system is 501 days. There are also opportunities for churches to partner with Better Together, and many ways for businesses and organizations to contribute to Better Together’s mission.

“This informational luncheon offers a no-pressure opportunity to learn more about Better Together’s work to strengthen families in the local community. No commitment is required,” said Megan Rose, CEO of Better Together. “Whether you are hosting a child in your home, mentoring a parent through life’s challenges or volunteering at a job fair or Parents’ Night Out event, each of our volunteers play a key role in the success and quality of Better Together’s programs, so we are always eager to welcome more volunteers to our family.”

The June 29 volunteer luncheon will take place from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. at Lake Park, located at 17302 N. Dale Mabry Highway in Lutz. Admission is free and includes lunch and a prize drawing. To register, visit BetterTogetherUS.org/Better-Families-Volunteer-Luncheon or call 239-470-2733.

To learn more about Better Together and volunteer opportunities, visit BetterTogetherUS.org/Better-Families/Volunteer.

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