Families turn out for JA’s Kid Care Photo ID

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, December 9, 2003

NATCHEZ &045;&045; If children have a need in the Miss-Lou, chances are a committee from Natchez’s Junior Auxiliary chapter is working to address it.

So perhaps it should be no surprise that JA members could be found Saturday at former Bath & Body Works space at Natchez Mall, taking pictures and gathering information for their free Kid Care ID program.

Through the program, sponsored nationally by Polaroid and the Center for Missing and Exploited Children, a head-and-shoulders photo is taken of each child. Each photo is placed in a small folder along with identifying information, such as height and weight, that parents are encouraged to update with time.

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That way, if his or her child ever comes up missing, a parent will have the necessary information ready for law enforcement and the media, said Joanne Waycaster, chairwoman of the chapter’s Kid Care Photo ID Committee.

&uot;So many kids get snatched these days that it’s important to have something like this,&uot; said Dorothy McGuire of Natchez, who brought her two great-grandchildren to have their photos taken.

Many parents and guardians said they found out about the program through the more than 3,000 letters local schools sent home with students. Others saw the Kid Care booth while they were Christmas shopping or having their children’s pictures taken with Santa.

&uot;We thought it would be the perfect time and place to do something like this,&uot; Waycaster said.

Other projects JA sponsors include JA Angel Tree, a spring race, participation in Partners in Education, an Easter egg hunt for children of the Guardian Shelter and Oak Towers and the collecting of school supplies for needy students in the fall, among other projects.