For the lack of a simple suitcase, hundreds of San Fernando Valley foster children go from home to home carrying their clothes and personal belongings in black trash bags.
"I've only had one child in 12 years who has had a suitcase," said Kathy Field, director of the Children's Bureau of Southern California Family Visitation Center in North Hollywood. "When we pick them up, oftentimes their stuff has been thrown in a garbage bag or plastic grocery bag. It's very, very sad."
However, the situation will be improving, because of the efforts of Brownie Troop 812 from Our Lady of Grace Catholic School in Encino. Last week,, the troop delivered about 40 suitcases, duffel bags and backpacks that were collected for foster children.
Linda Tanzi Jackson, a troop co-leader, suggested the idea after reading a magazine article about a young girl who started a suitcase donation program for foster children. Jackson, who volunteers monthly at the center monitoring visits between foster kids and their biological parents, thought it would be a good community service project for her troop.