Charlie’s Dinosaur

// Detectives love getting these kinds of calls

The right kinds of calls have been coming in to the Pierce County Sheriff’s detectives behind the Charlie’s Dinosaur drive.

“Our box is full,” said the Tacoma Police officer at substation two.

“We have a lot of coats,” said TPD spokeswoman Loretta Cool at headquarters.

Box after box of donations arrived at the Sheriff’s headquarters in the County-City building.

Pierce County Sheriff’s detective Ed Troyer stopped by the warehouse where Charlie’s Dinosaur shares space with Mission to Mexico and Toys For Tots. There was a crate of rolling suitcases, another of backpacks. Someone had gone to Costco and bought a stack of jammies for toddlers. A big box of markers, crayons and notebooks is pretty good evidence that someone else understands that art is a valuable outlet for children in crisis.

The public’s support – make that your support – of foster children is helping to energize the Charlie’s Dinosaur board members. They are looking for more ways to help kids through the foster care system.

“They are in the process of redoing the visiting rooms at DSHS this spring, the rooms where the kids in foster care visit their parents,” Troyer said. “They are painting, putting in new carpet, getting new toys. The detectives decided that needs to be done for the kids’ sake.”

They are planning a coat drive with Walmart, too, Troyer said.

“When fall rolls around, they’ll walk into schools and see kids dressed in layers, without coats, even in freezing weather,” he said.

So they give coats to those children, even if they are not in foster care.

“They see the kids where the need actually is. It goes straight from us to the kids. Nothing in between.”

We’ll wrap the drive in a couple of weeks. In the meantime, feel free to bring your donations to Tacoma Weekly, 2588 Pacific Highway, Fife, 98424.

About The Drive

Child abuse and neglect cases are some of the hardest on Pierce County Sheriff’s deputies. Though they are all awful, the deaths of Charlie and Braden Powell at their father’s hand was one of the worst. Who could make sense of a parent murdering his own boys?

After they found a picture Charlie made of a happy dinosaur, five detectives saw it as the mascot of an effort to help the kids they still can. They founded Charlie’s Dinosaur as a non-profit to help children moving out of abuse and into foster care.

There’s an awkward time in that process, said Det. Sgt. Theresa Berg. The children rarely have clean clothes, toiletries or anything to pass the time in the few days when they are in meetings, hearings and temporary care. Charlie’s Dinosaur fills in that blank with a backpack or rolling suitcase filled with new necessities.

The detectives are allowing us to help fill those bags during Tacoma Weekly’s Charlie’s Dinosaur Drive for Foster Kids. The list of things the children need, and the places to bring them are next to this story.

ABOUT THE DRIVE

Child abuse and neglect cases are some of the hardest on Pierce County Sheriff’s deputies. Though they are all awful, the deaths of Charlie and Braden Powell at their father’s hand was one of the worst. Who could make sense of a parent murdering his own boys?

After they found a picture Charlie made of a happy dinosaur, five detectives saw it as the mascot of an effort to help the kids they still can. They founded Charlie’s Dinosaur as a non-profit to help children moving out of abuse and into foster care.

There’s an awkward time in that process, said Det. Sgt. Theresa Berg. The children rarely have clean clothes, toiletries or anything to pass the time in the few days when they are in meetings, hearings and temporary care. Charlie’s Dinosaur fills in that blank with a backpack or rolling suitcase filled with new necessities.

The detectives are allowing us to help fill those bags during Tacoma Weekly’s Charlie’s Dinosaur Drive for Foster Kids. The list of things the children need, and the places to bring them are next to this story.

Most Wanted New Items

  • Backpacks

  • Rolling luggage

  • Pajamas (no nightgowns or shorties)

  • Hair dryers

  • Jeans and tops

  • Zip-front hoodies

  • Coats

  • Toiletries, including shampoo, conditioner, deodorant and body wash

  • Combs and brushes

  • Art supplies and books

Dino Donation Sites

Pierce County Sheriff’s Department in the County-City Building

All Pierce County Sheriff’s substations

All Tacoma Police Department Substations

The Tacoma Weekly, 2588 Pacific Highway, Fife.

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