ADVOCATES FOR ABUSED CHILDREN NEEDED IN BAY & SAGINAW COUNTIES
February 2, 2017
By: Josh Sharrow
The CAN Council Great Lakes Bay Region is offering a training beginning February 20th for those interested in becoming volunteer Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) in Saginaw or Bay County. CASAs are highly-trained volunteers serving as the voice for children who are in the system due to abuse or neglect.
The CASA Program fills the gap of the foster care and child welfare systems by training and supervising volunteers to advocate for the best interests of abused children. With the help of a CASA, a child is half as likely to languish in the foster care system and is more likely to find a safe and permanent home.
"CASAs are invaluable to my court in making informed decisions to improve the lives of children and families at risk. Cases can take up to a year or more to resolve and CASAs make great efforts to get to know the child, learn everything they can about that child and stay connected with the child. In every case, CASAs bring helpful insights and knowledge of children to the court which would otherwise be missing. They bring love, caring, and consistency to children who so desperately need it, who in most cases have been removed from the only homes they have ever known and placed in foster care. When it comes to children, CASA volunteers are some of the most compassionate and committed people one could ever hope to meet. As a judge that presides over cases involving children who have been abused and neglected, CASAs are a voice I depend on." Hon. Barbara Meter, Probate Judge, Family Division, 10th Judicial Circuit Court.
People from all walks of life, who are at least 21 years old, are encouraged to apply to become a CASA volunteer for either Bay or Saginaw County. Upon completion of an extensive background check and required training, a CASA can expect to contribute an average of 12-20 hours each month.
To begin the CASA application process, contact Randy D. Roberts, CASA Program Director, at (989) 752-7226.