To the Editor: Be a volunteer for CASA

The month of January is usually a time people make New Year’s resolutions. Why not consider being a volunteer for CASA? Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) are trained people and are appointed by a judge to represent the best interests of a child in court. These children are at risk because of their circumstances, i.e., they are abused or neglected and have become wards of the court. CASA is the only program where volunteers are appointed by the court to represent the child’s best interest.

A CASA volunteer provides a judge with carefully-researched background details about the child to help the court make a sound decision regarding the child’s future. The CASA volunteer reviews all records pertaining to the child and then makes recommendations on placement to the judge and follows through on the case until it is permanently resolved. This is most important because the child’s advocate will be continually involved in the case until it is resolved. (The volunteer is the consistent person in all these proceedings and provides continuity for the youngster.)

CASA has been endorsed by the American Bar Association, The National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges, and the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention of the U.S. Department of Justice.

Please consider CASA when making your New Year’s resolutions.

Marguerite Nye

Ogle County Board Member

CASA Board Member, serving the children of Lee, Carroll and Ogle counties

From the Feb. 3-9, 2010 issue.

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