Zarate interviewed caseworker Brittany Burks and toured the Piper Children’s Center, which houses the commissary and library, and also visited Dimmick Cottage. Houseparents Mark and Becky Martin currently care for boys ranging in age from 9 to 18 at Dimmick. Becky Martin showed Zarate through the cottage and explained how each cottage functions much like any other family household does, with family meals, individual chores and responsibilities, and full schedules of extracurricular activities.
Burks is impressed with Zarate’s attitude. “Christal is a very sweet and caring young woman. She is compassionate about what she is doing, and I could tell that this wasn’t just something she had to do for school. She really seems to have a heart for helping others.”
Zarate’s study of STCHM inspired her to organize a benefit to raise funds for the Children’s Home. On April 18, she held a dance benefit at her church, Our Lady of Guadalupe in Alice, complete with a DJ and refreshments. Zarate raised more than $100 and presented the proceeds from the dance to Todd Roberson, president and CEO of STCHM, last week.
“I really enjoyed learning about South Texas Children’s Home Ministries and what they do,” Zarate said. “What they do is really important, and it feels good to be able to give to such a worthy cause.”