Monday, October 3, 2022

Parker: Service to others is what makes our community strong

Serving the people of House District 63 is the highest honor of my professional life. Visiting with folks in the district provides opportunities to shape public policy, improve government responsiveness, and advance legislation for the betterment of our great state. It also provides rare insight into the heart of our communities, including the daily selfless acts of others. It reflects how amazing Texans are in their pursuit to ignite inspiration that makes meaningful differences in the lives of others.

One of the most impactful ways we can change a life is to step up and protect the most vulnerable of our society. Texans like Bob Williams and the team behind the non-profit Ranch Hands Rescue are some of the brightest lights fighting against a dark reality that exists in our society. Ranch Hands Rescue is a human and animal sanctuary founded on hope and healing for the long-term recovery of survivors who are finding their way after enduring unimaginable trauma, severe abuse, and in some cases, human trafficking.

In working with survivors of all ages, Bob recognized there is a growing underserved population in need of immediate advocacy – boys who have fallen prey to human trafficking. These boys are far too often the hidden victims rescued from this horrific evil.

Last year, Ranch Hands Rescue opened Bob’s House of Hope, the first safe house in the country for young men who have been sex trafficked. With a team of highly-trained professionals, therapy animals, and a group of dedicated local volunteers, the promise of hope is becoming reality each day for the survivors who have found safe refuge there.

Programs at Ranch Hands Rescue and Bob’s House of Hope provide healing from the horrific pain and mental anguish endured as victims. Forced drug addiction, complex medical challenges, legal trouble, educational deficits, and a host of other issues, are just some of the devastating challenges they face. Instead of falling into an endless cycle of dependency and despair, Bob’s House of Hope is teaching life skills and providing counseling to give these young Texans a renewed life. The transformation that is taking place at Ranch Hands Rescue and Bob’s House of Hope is miraculous and restores the goodness our community is built upon.

On Saturday, September 17, my wife, Beth and I are serving as honorary chairs for their Ignite Hope 2022 Gala with music, special guests, entertainment, and much more at the Embassy Suites hotel in Denton. We hope you can join this magical night that showcases the passion for service that is ingrained in the spirit of Texas. You can learn more at www.ranchhandrescue.org.

Another fantastic example of the heart of our community is how fast organizations like Special Olympics Texas are growing. I cannot imagine the feeling of watching sporting activities from the sidelines without the hope of being included or knowing the thrill of the game.

Isolation is a cruel barrier and far too often, we see people with disabilities missing out on the simple joys such as team sports. Through amazing advocacy and compassion, Special Olympics is making certain that physical and intellectual challenges never stop anyone from participating in sporting activities.

Flower Mound is the host home to the Special Olympics Texas Steak & Stetson gala, a highlight of what we can all do together to ensure local Texans with disabilities play too. I am honored to be a part of this year’s mission with Highland Village Police Chief Doug Reim (lead organizer), Denton County Sheriff Tracy Murphree, leaders from local law enforcement and an incredible group of volunteers. Each is dedicated to creating a fun and festive evening of great food, live music, auctions, and entertainment at Circle R Ranch on Friday, September 23 starting at 6 p.m. Please consider joining us to open doors for differently-abled Texans at https://www.sotx.org/event-detail/steak-stetson-16575908.

These are just two events happening in our area but there are many more community events and volunteer opportunities underway this September and throughout the year. I wish I could name them all but knowing that is not possible is a sign our community is filled with action and unparalleled enthusiasm to serve others!

As always, it is an honor to serve you in the Texas House of Representatives. If you would like to share a thought, please feel free to contact me at 512.463.0688 or email at [email protected]. You can also find me on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube.

CTG Staff
CTG Staff
The Cross Timbers Gazette News Department

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