The hub of information for the Second Judicial Circuit Guardian ad Litem Program, our blog contains posts with announcements, news and events, articles, periodicals and additions or updates to our website.

This page contains published posts from the September 2018 archive sorted chronologically with the newest at the top.

New Events: Volunteer Training Wakulla and 2018 Guardian ad Litem Holiday Gift Drive

We regularly host, sponsor and support a variety of events that provide community outreach, increase awareness of our program, help recruit new volunteers, raise funds and furnish training to our volunteer guardians ad litem. The following events were added to our calendar.

You can also browse and access events on our calendar grid.

Holiday Gift Drive Helps Brings Normalcy To Local Children

We are pleased to announce the 2018 Guardian ad Litem Holiday Gift Drive has been scheduled in early December.

Separated from family and siblings, the holiday season can be a difficult and lonely time for the abused, neglected and abandoned children represented by our program. Despite their circumstances and heartbreaking stories, these children and youth still anticipate the season like any other child.

The annual holiday gift drive — run by our nonprofit partner Guardian ad Litem Foundation Second Circuit, Inc. — ensures that all children and youth represented by our program are able to receive some gifts this holiday season.

Please visit gal2.org/gift to learn more and then help us spread the word.

Holiday Gift Drive Print Flyer

On the gal2.org/gift event page, you can learn about this important and popular event.

  • How our holiday gift drive works
  • How you or your business can participate
  • Drive sponsors and supporting events
  • Gift recommendations by age and gender
  • How to get in contact

There are still some details to be added to the event page, so stay tuned for future update announcements.

Thank you for your support!

Volunteer Dorothy Binger Receives 2018 Glenn J. Winuk Humanitarian Service Award

Second Judicial Circuit Guardian ad Litem Program Circuit Director Deborah Moore (left) and Holland & Knight Attorney Kevin Cox present Dorothy 'Dot' Binger with the Glenn J. Winuk Humanitarian Service Award on Tuesday, September 11, 2018 in Tallahassee, Florida.
Photo: gal2.org

On Tuesday, September 11, 2018, veteran guardian ad litem volunteer Dorothy "Dot" Binger was presented with the Glenn J. Winuk Humanitarian Service Award. This accolade is bestowed by Tallahassee law firm Holland & Knight every September 11th to honor "those who dedicate their time to serve others in the community."

A volunteer with our program for twenty-nine years, Binger has previously received the Volunteer Florida Champion of Service Award and the Dorothy "Dot" Binger Lifetime Achievement Award, named in her honor.

Binger's latest award comes with a $1,000 donation from Holland & Knight made to the charity of her choice. She has generously selected Guardian ad Litem Foundation Second Circuit, Inc., the not-for-profit volunteer organization founded in 1988 to support our program.

You can see three photographs from the awards ceremony. In addition, Binger's latest accolade was featured in an article published in the Tallahassee Democrat.

The article is presented below in case you missed it. Thank you to the Democrat for sharing our program with their readers.

Tallahassee woman Dorothy Binger receives 9-11 Glenn J. Winuk Humanitarian Service Award
by Nada Hassanein

Tallahassee Democrat
Tuesday, September 11, 2018

Dorothy "Dot" Binger's 29 years serving in the guardian ad litem program for children are being recognized today as she receives the annual Glenn J. Winuk Humanitarian Service Award.

The award is issued every year on Sept. 11, National Day of Service and Remembrance and honors those who dedicate their time to serve others in the community — either through consistent volunteering throughout the years like Binger, or in a "one-time heroic act."

The award is named after New York-based attorney Glenn J. Winuk, who died during the Sept. 11 attacks while assisting as a volunteer firefighter and EMT.

Holland & Knight, a Tallahassee law firm of which Winuk was a partner, created the award to honor the late attorney. The law firm will donate $1,000 to a charity of Binger's choice.

As a guardian ad litem, Binger, 94, has committed to neglected and abused children, offering support for them during the complexities of court trials they've had to endure as kids. She was also recognized as a 2012 Trailblazer by the Oasis Center for Women and Girls.

"Anyone who sees this petite, dynamic 94-year-old woman," said Deborah Moore, guardian ad litem director, "are inspired to redouble their efforts on behalf of children who have experienced abuse and neglect in the Second Judicial Circuit."

Moore nominated Binger for the award, saying she is a "role model and inspiration." She added, "I continue to be amazed at her unwavering energy, compassion and devotion."

Two other finalists were also recognized Tuesday.

Ronald Burger, who spent 49 years in public service, including in the Peace Corps, the American Red Cross, the Centers for Disease Control and the National Disaster Medical System.

Col. Grant Slayden, trial court administrator for the Second Judicial Circuit who retired last month from the U.S. Army after 32 years of service, according to a press release. He deployed on search-and-rescue missions in South Florida following Hurricane Irma.

Reach Nada Hassanein at nhassanein@tallahassee.com or on Twitter @nhassanein_.

New Event, Rescheduled Events and Volunteer Form Update

New Event

We regularly host, sponsor and support a variety of events that provide community outreach, increase awareness of our program, help recruit new volunteers, raise funds and furnish training to our volunteer guardians ad litem. The following event was added to our calendar.

You can also browse and access events on our calendar grid.

Rescheduled Events

The following events have been rescheduled.

  • Volunteer Training: October 2018
    Training
    Monday, October 1, 2018
    Thursday, October 4, 2018
    Monday, October 8, 2018
    Thursday, October 11, 2018
    Monday, October 15, 2018
    Thursday, October 18, 2018

  • Optima Refresher
    Continuing Education
    Tuesday, October 16, 2018

  • Optima Refresher
    Continuing Education
    Tuesday, November 20, 2018

Volunteer Form Update

The GAL Report To The Court form has been updated. Word and PDF versions of the form can be downloaded from the Form and Document Library on the Current Volunteers page.

Event Handouts and Staff Directory Update

Event Handouts

Two handouts — Conditions For Return and Incarcerated Parents — from the Legal Update continuing education event on Thursday, August 23, 2018 are now available for download on the event page.

Staff Directory Update

Our staff directory on the Contact page has been updated to reflect recent personnel changes.

Katelyn Carmona, Rachael Smith and Tracy Wills have departed. We thank Katelyn, Rachael and Tracy for their service and wish them the best with their future endeavors.