Allen County Children Services to start program to benefit children entering relative/kinship care

LIMA — Allen County Children Services is teaming up with Abby Hurles of Lima to create the Journey Totes program. The goal of the partnership is to provide essential items in a bag for children entering relative/kinship care.

Journey totes will help provide children who are unable to remain in their homes due to safety concerns with hygiene products and other items to help ease the transition into placement outside of their own homes, according to Children Services officials.

In January, Hurles — a mother of three — approached the agency with an idea to benefit children. Officials realized the program would be a perfect fit for children and relatives providing kinship care.

Journey Totes provides children with a bag filled with essential items such as a toothbrush, toothpaste, deodorant, a note pad, pencils, glue, diapers and baby wipes for infants. Totes are gender and age specific.

Hurles manages the fundraising, shopping and the filling of bags for the project. She then turns filled bags over to Children Services. Hurles raises money for totes by asking individuals to purchase a tote at a cost of $20 that she fills at little expense to herself.

Anyone willing to sponsor one or more totes may contact Hurles at

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