Charles Bragg shares the best part of his work
As Spaulding for Children’s Foster Care Aid, Charles Bragg gets people where they need to be, physically. And he makes sure the children and families Spaulding serves get what they need in every way that he can.
Mr. Bragg assists everyone at Spaulding, from the president to the staff and especially to the children and families. He takes children to appointments with doctors and dentists, visits to specialists in Spaulding offices, and wherever else they need to be.
Mr. Bragg started as a temporary worker assigned to Spaulding. What started as a six month engagement would turn into an invitation to return when a full-time position opened. In his 11 years with Spaulding, he has met parents and children who have experienced a lot of pressures.
“Some of these kids have been through so much,” Mr. Bragg said. “They might not believe it, but we are all here to help. Even if they have to be removed from their home, we then do all we can to help them return home.”
He also helps transport furnishings to families starting over, and in every other way Spaulding provides a helping hand. Plus, he’s responsible for the care and maintenance of Spaulding’s vehicles, a pair of specially equipped vans.
In his work, Mr. Bragg also helps Spaulding deliver critical support to caregivers and parents which is so often needed. He transports biological, foster and adoptive parents to Spaulding classes and training programs to prevent an issue or conflict from escalating into abuse or neglect.
The aim, he said, is to help strengthen the family unit after a child is removed from parental custody, so that one day the child can be returned to a safe and nurturing home.
“The real clients at Spaulding are the kids,” Mr. Bragg said. “We want them, foster parents, biological parents – everybody – to feel special and to feel welcome when they’re here.
“In some cases, things don’t work out. Parents’ rights may terminated by the court. No judge or referee wants to take a child from their parent, but they may have to because the parents have not done what they need to do to get their kids back.”
Charles’ bright smile and, “Yes! I can do that” attitude make him indispensable to everyone he meets.
“You can pass along what’s right and teach something you’ve learned to everyone,” Mr. Bragg said. “There’s something about the road. It’s relaxing. When transporting a young person, lots of time they’ll open up and we’ll talk. They give insight into their situation. I want them to know that what we are doing is trying to help them.
“Best of all, I like seeing families coming back together – helping kids go home to their parents and seeing them happy to see their parents.”