HTH: CASA of Red River in urgent need of volunteers

Helping the Helpers

WICHITA FALLS (KFDX/KJTL) — If you have a heart for children, CASA of Red River could use some new advocates to speak up for young boys and girls who’ve been abused or neglected.

Officials said because child abuse cases have increased since the pandemic, the need for volunteers is at an all-time high.

After retiring from the air force, Dawn Ferrell, who once worked with children, decided to become a court-appointed special advocate for CASA of Red River.

“I didn’t realize how much involved you could get in with the children’s lives and how much fun it would be, how much challenging it would be, but also how much it would just fill your heart,” Ferrell said.

Volunteers like Ferrell play one of the most crucial roles in a potential foster child’s life. And it’s more than just representing the children in court.

“A lot of our kiddos, they maybe don’t have everything that they need to start school or maybe they don’t have everything they need just because of circumstances, so CASA does a really good job of trying to raise money,” Ferrell said.

The number of child abuse victims increased drastically during the pandemic across the country, including here at home.

Which has CASA’s Executive Director James Bodling actively searching for new volunteers.

“Especially men, majority of the children that we serve in foster care are boys, and [they] don’t have that male role model,” Bodling said.

Bodling and Ferrell said folks may be surprised at how rewarding becoming a CASA for a child in foster care can be and appeal to residents to open up their hearts to the process.

If this is something you are interested in, there is an informational meeting Thursday, October 21, at noon. Call (940) 766-0552 for details.

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