Brother, sister team finances parent educators’ trip to Parents as Teachers National Center conferences
Oklahoma City, OK – Oct. 31, 2018 – Siblings Angela Rau and Steve Roy were raised to be socially-conscious. Their reverence for the less fortunate was influenced by the untimely death of their mother, Mary Roy (nee Corff) at age 24, and the ideals of community engagement that was subsequently reinforced in them by their grandparents and father.
Angela was only three, and Steve was eight months old when their mother died. Their father, Jean, with help from family and friends, raised them as a single father until he remarried to Shirley. Together, they had three children Christy, Edward, and Timothy. Unexpectedly, cancer struck the family again, taking Jean Roy at age 49, while he was still raising young children.
Now, adults, Angela and Steve have established the Jean and Mary Roy Family Scholarship of Oklahoma to support victims of cancer and groups like Parents as Teachers (PAT), an internationally-recognized early childhood development organization. PAT is an evidence-based home visiting model that promotes the optimal early development, learning and health of young children by supporting and engaging their parents and caregivers – their first teachers.
“We believe that our parents would have greatly benefited from Parents as Teachers,” Angela said, adding, “there are many circumstances that parents find themselves facing, while parenting. Having Parents as Teachers available to Oklahoma families is critical for families, parents and children.”
PAT impacts the well-being and school readiness of nearly 200,000 families and young children annually, in thousands of communities in all 50 states. The majority of families served have one or more risk factors.
For the past two years, the Jean and Mary Roy Family Scholarship has provided financial support for PAT parent educators to attend annual conferences. Parent educators make personal home visits and help families with parental/child interactive skills.
This year’s scholarship recipients are Marina Montoya-Zorrilla, a 16-year PAT parent educator, who received the 2017 Outstanding Home Visitor Award from the Office of Child Abuse Prevention; and Consuelo Rozo, an eight-year PAT veteran. The two work out of the Latino Community Development Agency (LCDA), a PAT affiliate that provides services to families in south Oklahoma City. They attended PAT’s annual conference in Phoenix, AZ earlier this month.
“Marina and Consuelo have been providing home-based services the longest, and were chosen because of their long-time commitment to PAT,” said Patty DeMoraes-Huffine, director of Prevention Programs at LCDA.
LCDA administers the scholarship on behalf of PAT because it is a Blue Ribbon Affiliate, which means it is among the highest quality members of the PAT home visitation and parent education field.
“We just felt that those parent educators could benefit from the professional development and comradery they would receive at the conference. They would learn new best practices that they could share with the families they serve,” Angela said with Steve adding, “We feel like supporting programs that are effective is a wise community investment.”
Steve said their family’s philanthropy is based on the conviction that a healthy, educated and community-minded society is essential to a healthy democracy. As entrepreneurs, Steve, along with Angela, own and operate an Oklahoma City industrial park on property passed through their family since the 1889 land run. Businesses surrounding or on the Corff Partnership LTD property at SE 29th street include: Balon, Cameron, Mid West Hose, M & M Supply, DXP Enterprises and TURNCO.
The two siblings are working to forge collaborative relationships with other private entities and government organizations in and around Oklahoma City. And as state and national public monies for social services programs continue to dwindle, Steve said it’s even more crucial that private organizations help provide other funding sources for public institutions.
“As a private organization, we are trying to connect with our business colleagues to establish relationships and give them a platform for their philanthropic objectives,” he said, adding, “Private funds have a direct impact on organizations without being filtered through government agencies. It’s far more important that we have the impact that dollar-for-dollar can deliver. We invest in non-profits that are doing the most, and where we can see a direct return on our money.”
As a volunteer with the American Cancer Society’s Coaches vs Cancer community outreach initiative, Steve also helps raise money to support families and victims of cancer, an undertaking that he relishes.
“It just makes you feel good when you see the smiling faces of kids and parents that you’ve been fortunate enough to help,” he said. “That makes it all worthwhile.”
Support for Parents as Teachers
Becky Moss, PAT chief development officer, echoes the sibling’s sentiments and is working with organizations and foundations to secure financial support to help PAT advance its mission.
“We are always looking to secure financial support that will help us continue developing evidence-based curriculums, conduct program evaluations, provide technical assistance, advocate for pro-family policies and train parent educators, all for the purpose of strengthening children and families,” Moss said.
For more information on giving opportunities, contact Becky Moss at 314-432-4330 ext. 1283 or by email at Becky.Moss@ParentsAsTeachers.org.