Clara B Farlow Logo

Foundation established to support local children

Carole Farlow Vaughn
Carole Farlow Vaughn

The Clara B. Farlow Foundation for Children is well on its way in its campaign to help Surry County children with major medical needs.

Started by Carole Farlow Vaughn, a resident of Surry County, the Foundation will provide financial assistance and support to families who have children under the age of 18 with serious physical or mental challenges and/or illnesses.

For those who are eligible, that might mean assisting in paying for doctor’s visits, hospital confinement, surgical care, laboratory tests, X-rays, orthopedic appliances, medical equipment, medical consultation, medical treatment, psychiatric counseling and physical therapy.

The Foundation was introduced at a luncheon this past spring, and its namesake, Clara B. Farlow, is Carole’s great-aunt. Clara was a Guilford County teacher who began writing letters to some of her former students who had entered the armed forces.

After the outbreak of World War II, her letter-writing efforts intensified, and she was soon writing to more than 250 students, friends and relatives. She saved more than 600 letters sent to her by her students, and probably wrote three to four times that number herself.

She was a clear confidante for many students, and was the one person they could trust to handle their school transcripts necessary for military placements and school opportunities. It is clear from the messages in these letters and cards, thanking Clara for her unselfish and tireless letter writing, that she was held in very high regard and the appreciation was heartfelt. Described by Carole as a mentor in her life as a little girl…and whose greatest love was children, she was the obvious choice for naming the Foundation.

Together with her husband, Rick, they hope to distribute as close to 100 percent of every dollar contributed for the benefit of children. All start-up expenses, expenses of the website design and that of the spring luncheon were paid out of pocket.

At the luncheon, two families pledged to match all contributions received in the 30 days that followed, up to $10,000. As the month came to a close, the Foundation had received $10,450.00. Thanks to the generosity of many Surry County residents, as well as a few individuals living out of the area, the Foundation will start with $33,200. The campaign to raise funds for the Foundation will continue, even through the distress of our recent economic state of affairs. Illness will strike, no matter the stability of our economy, and the children’s families who might benefit from this Foundation depend on the kindness and unselfishness of the many blessed and healthy individuals and families in this community.

Operationally, the Foundation plans to pay out benefits semi-annually, and is currently taking applications through the month of November, for disbursement prior to the end of this year. Each applicant’s case will be decided individually, based on proof of financial need.

For further information, to make a tax-deductible donation or to apply for benefits, visit the website at You may also contact Carole Vaughn directly at

Article published in the Surry Messenger, September 13, 2009

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