Jerry Bailey devotes his life to helping abused and neglected children. So when he saw two teen-aged girls soliciting money at Wal-Mart for abused children last Wednesday, he naturally gravitated to them.
"I asked for a brochure and information and they had absolutely nothing," Bailey said.
As executive director of CASA for the 28th Judicial Circuit, Bailey grew suspicious of the teens, who told him they were emissaries of an organization called Reach Family. CASA supports and promotes court-appointed volunteer advocacy for abused and neglected children so that they can thrive in safe, permanent homes.
Concerned about the solicitors' authenticity, Bailey searched the web for Reach Family and found a group of that name. But in an e-mail response to a query from Bailey, a representative of Reach Family said, "We do not have any associates in the state of Kentucky. We are not collecting money for any project in either state. We offer services only within the state of South Carolina. These girls do not represent our company."