After a year of planning, securing funding and many hours of work, the Play Therapy Room at the Children’s Advocacy Center of Hidalgo County in Mission has become a reality. The Mission Chamber of Commerce Ribbon Cutting on Tuesday, July 9, marked its official “opening.”

The Play Therapy Room is the newest addition to the CACHC Mission facility, located at 1116 N. Conway Ave. The center, which opened in 2017, provides a safe haven where young abuse victims can be treated in a non-institutional environment. Services are offered for children two to 17 years of age who are victims of sexual, physical and emotional abuse.

The CACHC partnered with the Rio Grande Valley Alumnae Chapter of Kappa Delta Sorority to create and furnish the play room. Funding was provided through a $6,500 Kappa Delta Foundation KiDs grant.

 “We are very grateful to the Kappa Delta Foundation and local alumnae members for helping us make the Play Therapy Room a reality,” said Jesus Sanchez, CACHC executive director. “We want to be able to provide every service to child abuse victims who come to the Mission center and help with the healing process. The children will benefit from a well-equipped, comfortable and effective play therapy room. Play therapy encourages these children to express emotions they often have difficulty expressing.”

All toys and materials do not automatically encourage children’s expression or exploration of their needs, feelings and experiences, Sanchez explained. Because of the grant, his staff was able to carefully select appropriate toys, learning aids and other materials needed for the Play Therapy Room.

Carol Hudsonpillar, chair of the RGV Kappa Delta alumnae chapter, said members of the chapter plan to stay involved with the center. 

“The KiDs grants are designed to allow Kappa Delta chapters an opportunity to partner with local nonprofit agencies to improve the quality of life for children, the heart of the community,” she said.  “Also, emphasis is given to sustainable projects with positive visibility in the community and the Center offers those qualities to the Rio Grande Valley community.  Our chapter would like to thank the Kappa Delta Foundation for the award and support of this worthy and important non-profit organization."

The foundation is the charitable arm of Kappa Delta Sorority, a national organization for women that inspires action through the power of lifelong friendships. One of the sorority’s official philanthropies is Prevent Child Abuse America.

In addition to securing the grant for the project, local Kappa Delta members have been donating toys, clothing and personal items for children served by the center. They made several donations during Child Abuse Prevention Month, and “showered” the CACHC staff with numerous items during the opening celebration.