GRAHAM (KFDX/KJTL) —
The North Star Court Appointed Special Advocates in Graham have more children to serve than there are CASA volunteers.
“Right now we’re not able to serve the number of children that we have,” CASA Executive Director Trisha Remington said. “Right now we have seven CASA volunteers that are active, we have three that are in training right now, and still we don’t have enough for the number of children,”
CASAs, also known as guardians, are well-trained volunteers appointed by the court with the sole priority of being there for a child that enters the foster care system.
“You know, we are the voice of the child in court,” CASA Program Director Rebecca Navarro said. “What we do is we gather information from all the people involved in the child’s case and we decide what the best interest of that child is and we voice it in court.”
Until a child is placed in a permanent home, a CASA volunteer can become the closest thing a child has to family.
“A lot of the people in that child’s life come and go, like they may be in one foster home and move to another foster home, they may have different social workers, but the CASA is the one that stays the constant in their life so they know they can rely on that CASA,” Remington said.
A CASA volunteer will spend around 10 to 15 hours a month on their case, will attend court four to five times a year, and may attend a few meetings. But one thing’s for sure, the time spent with the child in their case is life-changing for both parties.