In a scene from The Blind Side, Michael informs the mom—who has just given him his own room in the family home—that this is the first time he has had his own bed. It may be hard to believe that many children do not have their own beds, but that does not make it less true. A former CASA client recently described his moves from foster home to foster home until his CASA advocate interceded, and he is now in a stable and permanent home.
The mission of CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocate) is to speak up in court on behalf of children who have been neglected or abused. Judges, advocates, family members all want children to be part of a loving family and strive to achieve that goal.
There is a continuing need for advocates–volunteers who review the case assigned them, consult with the child, family members, teachers, and any other person involved in the child’s life. After making the contacts, advocates prepare reports that are presented to the judge on the case. These reports assist the judge with his/her decision regarding the placement of the child.
Early this spring, CASA will offer a training class for persons who would like to become advocates. If you are interested, please call 815-288-1901.
In the meantime, the annual Lee County CASA Bowl-a-thon will be held Sunday, Jan. 30 (noon-3) at Plum Hollow Recreation Center in Dixon. The Rochelle Rotary Club’s “From the Heart” event is on Feb. 4. The committee has named Ogle County CASA as one of the 2011 beneficiaries.
As you lie in your warm bed tonight, be mindful that there are people, especially children—that may not be in their own beds. Be grateful for the professionals and volunteers who work to have children living with families who love them and provide their basic needs. Please consider what you might do to help.
CASA–15th Judicial Circuit
Board of Directors