CASA members graduated four new CASA volunteers who were sworn in as officers of the court (l. to r.) CASA Director Melanie Davis, new CASA Cindy Tully, new CASA Rosemary Lovelace, new CASA Cassie Stanley, new CASA Sandra White, Honorable Judge Jan Wheeler, Volunteer Supervisor Mckenzi Walker, Volunteer Supervisor Pamela Ragan, Volunteer Supervisor Amy Tomei, and Recruitment and Engagement Specialist Destiny Morgan. Photo courtesy of Appalachian Judicial Circuit.
Judge Jan Wheeler swears in court appointed special advocates for foster children
Congratulations to our newest CASA volunteer training graduates sworn in on November 8 by Judge Jan Wheeler. Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) are trained community volunteers who are appointed by a judge to advocate for an abused and neglected child in juvenile court deprivation proceedings. CASA volunteers are making a tremendous difference in the lives of abused or neglected children in the foster care system. These children are faced with tough situations and entering the foster care system can be traumatic. They aren’t just removed from their homes, but most times are removed from their schools, friends and community.
Volunteer advocates speak to everyone involved in the child’s life, including their family members, teachers, doctors, lawyers, social workers and others; and make written recommendations to the court for the child’s best interest. The advocate is often the only constant adult presence in the child’s life. Many more child advocates are still needed. Two out of every three abused and neglected children are waiting for a CASA volunteer.