Casa provides such an important service to our vulnerable children in the community. They are the most dedicated, well trained, compassionate group with tremendous leadership, staff and volunteers. Thank you for all you do!
My volunteer experience with Anne Arundel CASA could not have been more positive. With a small staff they provide huge support!! I needed to work with a social worker, several foster homes and schools for one young man. CASA was there to assist me in keeping an even level of assistance. If the staff member I was assigned to was not available whoever was available would try to help me. The work of the staff is way beyond a job....it is a whole heart commitment to ensure the safety and growth of those in foster care!!
From the first night of training it was clear that the staff of the AACCASA was totally committed to the vision of the Seattle judge who had the idea of a CASA for each child in foster care. The executyive director, Rebecca Tingle, continually creates opportunities to make the program known throughout the community. As a volunteer I always feel totally supported in what I am doing. The staff is knowledgable about the social service system and the court system. They are able to clarify any questions that I have.
The emphasis is about the children not the "great job" the agency is doing. I volunteer for other non-rofits and am always glad to see that AACCASA ia following its purpose in everything they do.
I’m a CASA volunteer with this organization. The work they do is vital not only to the health, education and overall well being of children in foster care, but it also provides important companionship and a voice to them. It is so important that these children have an advocate with the school, the doctors, the court system and even at times with the foster and biological families. I have seen children flourish with the support provided by this agency. The only difficulty is that CASA can’t yet serve every child who needs this kind of support, so funding is critical! I love being a CASA!
CASA is an organization that makes a difference in the lives of children as well as the volunteers . We are well trained and supported to help children know they are important and cared for in the midst of very difficult times in their lives . I’ve gained so much being a part of the lives of some very special children and I’m proud to say I am a CASA!
As an Anne Arundel County CASA advocate, donor and volunteer, I have never experienced a more professional, passionate and dedicated group of professionals performing the most crucial task of advocating for abused and neglected children. I am honored to work alongside these amazing people.
Every penny donated, granted, or saved enhances the lives of the children.
If I could give 6 stars I would. Anne Arundel County CASA has done outstanding work helping foster children and the most vulnerable in need. The staff and volunteers have always given their heart and soul to this amazing cause. They are some of the kindest and most brilliant people! What a joy it's been to see Anne Arundel County CASA flourish and see their remarkable impact on so many kids in need of support. Blessings and love to all of you.
AAC CASA, Inc is the best value for your nonprofit donations of your time and/or money. It was an honor and a privilege to serve as a CASA volunteer case worker. The training was thorough and supervisors were easily accessible. My cases covered the spectrum from aging out of the system, reunification and outside adoption. The case reports you write are submitted directly to the Judge and they matter. It is an extremely rewarding use of your time. I feel I got more out of the experience than I gave.
I've been a CASA volunteer for over 25 years, starting in Washington State and continuing when I moved to Maryland. Helping to find safe and stable homes for abused and neglected children is the most important work I will ever do in my life. I couldn't do it without the support and assistance of the amazing team at Anne Arundel County CASA.
I joined Anne Arundel Co. CASA in 2001 as a volunteer. I was so impressed with the organization and its mission that I quickly became a donor as well. The training I received was remarkable; the knowledge and commitment of the staff was inspirational. The children in the foster care system who are served by CASA have lacked stability and predictability in their short lives. Many have been moved frequently from placement to placement. A CASA is assigned to one child or set of siblings at a time and devotes all of his/her time and attention to that case. This is of great value not only to the children, but also to the judge who is reviewing their case. AAC CASA is significantly improving the lives of foster children every day. Because of a change in my circumstances, I was only able to continue as a volunteer for nine years, but I have continued as a donor and as an enthusiastic supporter of this amazing institution.
I joined CASA over ten years ago. The training I received was extremely professional and thorough. The on-going supervision and support have been exceptional. Children in the foster care system have a social worker and a legal aide attorney representing them; however, these professionals have very heavy workloads and are limited in the amount of time they can devote to each child. The CASA volunteer has just one child, or group of siblings, at a time, and, thus, is able to thoroughly delve into all aspects of the child's life . . . family, school, health care, etc. I was very pleased and impressed to discover how much value the judges place on the recommendations of the CASAs. In many instances, the CASA volunteer is the only constant in a child's life.
I've been a CASA for one set of siblings that entered care as teenagers. The older ones have been released from foster care, but I've been with the youngest girl for over three years now. Earlier this year when she was moved to her 4th home, she told her new foster parents that I was the only person that had not changed since she was taken into foster care.
A teen girl may not have a lot to say to an older person, but she knows I'm a volunteer and I don't have to talk to her and visit her for my job. I've never told her a lie or sugar-coated a truth. I mostly just keep in touch and support her through what happens in her life. I don't lecture her, but I also tell her when she's contributed to some of her own difficulties (as we all do at times).
I feel I've made a small positive contribution to her life, and I could not do that without the training and council from the AACO CASA office.
I have been a CASA for four years now. I know CASA is making a difference in the lives of hundreds of children. I am glad to be a part of it.
I have been a CASA for two years now. I was assigned a 15 year-old girl and WOW has she flourished. She looks forward to meeting every week and has said numerous times how happy she is that I am in her life. Being a foster care child leaves children sad that their biological parents could not care for them. A CASA is a person in that child's life that is not paid to be there, they are simply volunteering their time. A foster care teenager realizes that fact and are thankful that someone cares enough to devote their time and energy to them. The role of a CASA is to ensure the child is being well cared for, feels secure, happy and loved. CASA is a necessity for children in the foster care system.
The work that CASA does--the work of the staff and volunteers--is so essential. They are standing in the gap for children and their families. I'm so proud to support this amazing organization.
Volunteering as a CASA and joining the board of Anne Arundel County CASA has changed my life in ways I struggle to put into words. Working with CASA is an opportunity to make a real, meaningful, positive change in the life of a child and in the lives of their family members. The team at AACASA is small but mighty. And more importantly--they are PASSIONATE! They work tirelessly to support this important work.
I am inspired by the amazing dedication and selflessness displayed by CASA volunteers. Their commitment and dedication to the most vulnerable children in our community is extraordinary. Thank you CASA for being boots on the ground for “our” children. God bless you all.
As a long-time member of the board for AA County CASA, I have heard story after story of the positive impact that CASA makes in our community. This organization serves abused and neglected children of all ages, races, gender, socioeconomic status - it helps the kids find a safe, stable and permanent home. The commitment of the volunteers to serve only the best interest of the children is the unique mission of CASA and can provide a unique viewpoint to the courts. Thanks to all those who are making a difference with the next generation by giving their time to this great organization!
I’m retired from law enforcement and have experienced some great people and some great organizations during my service. For a period of time
, I was an investigator assigned to the Child Abuse Unit. Back then, we had social agencies that worked very hard in advocating for children. I was never aware of the great things that CASA did until I first met my step daughter Rebecca Tingle. She impressed me so much with her knowledge and dedication to CASA. I’ve seen the great work that Rebecca, her staff and many volunteers have accomplished. We are very proud of Rebecca’s commitment to make the world a better place for troubled children.
We all would like enrich our lives doing good and finding meaning in our day to day life. I found this in being a CASA Volunteer. It’s been almost a year since I got the call and accepted the case. It was difficult at times, but it was well worth it. This child needed a voice. Someone who was neutral to all involved and focused on the child. She needed someone who would make several trips to doctor appointments and go home and research her illnesses. She needed someone to ask difficult questions and stay strong. She needed a voice who would never give up on her. The experience enriched my life and I’m grateful for it. I’m very thankful for having a patient and understanding CASA supervisor. She guided me and at times just listened. Thank-you Christine.
Kids are our future, nothing is more important! CASA does for kids what no other organization does. I completed the training and was so impressed with everyone I met that was associated with CASA. It's an amazing group of selfless, compassionate people that are truly changing the lives of so many less fortunate children!
I just completed my training and am excited to process swearing ceremony so that I can become an active CASA. I learned about CASA from an active volunteer, her passion and enthusiasm encouraged me to read more and to speak with another volunteer. The training session was lead by an experienced, knowledgeable trainer with devotion and passion for the program. I can't think of a better way to give back than to help a child
My name is Victoria Bowen and I have had the privilege to support Rebecca Tingle, Administrator and her Staff of the AACO CASA. I have worked in the same building with their department and have first hand seen the hard work they have done and continue to do with planning events to representation in court for over 20 years. They have always been polite and wear a smile to share with anyone and everyone regardless of situation. They are great role models for the struggling.....
I just recently finished training and am more excited than ever to be a CASA. It seemed like such a great organization online/on paper, and my impression of CASA only went up from there. I had the best instructor, and learned so much more on how incredible the program is, and how much it does for these children involved. Can't wait to fully be able to be a part of it.
The best way to make an impact in a child's life. I have been a CASA volunteer for 7 years and glad I made the decision to join this organization.
The CASA organization give the BEST training if have ever received as a volunteer. I felt totally prepared to be a volunteer after completing the course. The organization give a voice to foster children via their CASA, and working as a CASA volunteer I truly feel I am helping these kids even in small way.
Our organization reached out to Rebecca Tingle, CASA's Executive Director, to organize a fund raiser for CASA (Dress Up for CASA). Rebecca was extremely responsive and a pleasure to work with. Her expertise in creating good relationships that benefit CASA was evident in all of the supporters, contacts and vendors she was able to immediately assemble to help us make the fund raiser a huge success. Rebecca, and everyone at Anne Arundel County CASA loves what they do and they do it well. They put in so much time and effort into a cause they love, and it shows. CASA's supporters came out in full force and we were able to raise a good amount of money for CASA and see how devoted CASA's staff, volunteers and donors are to CASA's mission. Even better, I know that I, as well as my organization's members, had such a great experience with Rebecca and CASA that we plan to work with them again to support all that CASA does in Anne Arundel County.
I have been unbelievably impressed with this organization, from the training, support and guidance of the volunteers, to their community outreach, fundraising and above all how true they stay to their core mission. Amazing people doing amazing work
I am a new CASA volunteer and just recently was assigned to my first kid. She is wonderful and I am looking forward to getting to know her and establish a relationship that will hopefully continue for a long time. I enjoyed the CASA training and not only did I learn a ton, but the instructor was knowledgeable and gave us the basics for being the best advocate for the child possible. I look forward to continuing in my role as an AA County CASA.
I have donated to this charity since it's inception. There is no better way to give back and help those who don't have a voice. Because of CASA, these vulnerable children have a voice and advocate to help them. Great leadership, great people, great cause.
Anne Arundel County CASA provides support for children in the foster care system to ensure their needs are met and they have an advocate. CASA provides a voice for the children.
Outstanding professional training and community service to support children in foster care. I am a proud CASA former volunteer for 7 years!
I have had the pleasure of participating in CASA’s mission for a number of years now and I can’t say enough positive things about the organization. From the committed and passionate staff, to the dedicated Board members and of course the CASAs themselves who contribute their time and emotional energy to helping children this group is amazing. I am proud to have contributed in whatever little way and encourage anyone who wants to positively impact some of the most vulnerable kids in our region to participate. The organization’s work impacts our local community and the individuals who comprise it in the most meaningful and significant ways and I hope it has the ability to do so for many years to come. Thanks to everyone involved!
I just completed my training to be a CASA( court appointed child advocate ). As part of the training I got to watch 4 court cases. I was so moved at the compassion for the children and the fact that the children are visibly happy, well cared for, respected. This is as a direct result of the work of the CASA making sure the child's needs are met and recommend s to the court what is in the best interest of the child. I can't wait to be an active CASA. My training was amazing and this may be the best organization I have ever encountered in my 50 years of being an educator
Volunteering with Anne Arundel County CASA has been a remarkable experience. I started volunteering in 2014 and it has been one of the most rewarding things I have ever done. My one regret in life is not joining them sooner. What an incredible way to be the voice for an abused or neglected child in foster care. If you are looking for something extremely rewarding, please consider volunteering with them.
Great organization! Everyone who works there is kinda. All the staff and volunteers puts in a lot of time and effort for every task they are assigned!
Sometimes kids are in foster care because their parents recognize they cannot provide for their needs and truly want what is best for them. As a CASA volunteer, I get the opportunity to advocate for children and make a difference in their lives. My CASA teenager was a victim of sex trafficking who was taken to at least 5 major U.S. cities and exploited. Social services intervened and the judge recognized she was a child in need of immediate services. She was placed in a therapeutic home, received treatment, and got into a GED program. That year was very bumpy for her and she went through a lot. Since that time, she has been reunited with her mother. She has a long road ahead but I have seen her smile and experience joyful moments in her life.
I was honored to be a volunteer at this years Tee Up For A Child golf tournament this year, for CASA. The event proved to be a success, and it all starts from the top. There was a great feeling throughout the day, and it felt like all the volunteers were enjoying themselves while helping out wherever they could. There's a lot of awesome people who are with CASA, and some I'm proud to call a friend. I look forward to helping out in the near future, wherever I can. Best.
I have just started on the adventure of being a CASA. I am already soo impressed by the stories of current and former CASAs that I wish I would have discovered this organization before now.
The staff is extremely well informed and trained; the most impressive is the fact that it is not "just a job" for them; they are truly concerned and dedicated to helping the youngsters who find themselves in need of assistance through the courts.
Since I started volunteering at AACO CASA, my heart hasn't been the same. I was blessed with an 11 year old girl in her second foster home. She is currently residing in her third foster placement and will soon be adopted by her current foster family. I have seen this beautiful child grow so much in the last year. When I first met her she was very un-happy, very confused and I'm sure frightened (although she would never admit that). She was removed from her home due to neglect as a result of her parents drug addictions. Her parents have gone to little effort to get her back so she has decided to be adopted. She loves her bio father but is ready to move on and embrace the family that has opened their doors to her. She has become very attached to me as a result of her challenges over the past year. She confides in me and shares many thing she wouldn't normally share. We have spent quite a bit of time together in the last year and she has been able to trust that someone will be there for her.
We have an amazing social worker on our case and the foster moms have been diligent in keeping up with her mental and physical health as well as her school success. In this I feel I have been very fortunate in that it has enabled me to really concentrate my efforts on the child herself.
I know CASA isn't for everyone. It's time consuming and can tug at your heart strings but for those who want to help a child in time of need this is for you.
My life has been changed because of this program and I can only hope that I have made a difference in the life of a beautiful deserving child.
I've been a CASA for almost 10 years, first in Montgomery County and since 2009, in Anne Arundel County. It's challenging - but very worthwhile - work. In order to be most effective, CASAs need training before they begin, continuing education every year, and clinical supervision on a regular basis. Anne Arundel Ct. CASA does an excellent job of providing this professional development and support. I know can count on staff when I'm stuck and need help figuring out next steps or new approaches. This organization makes it possible for people like me to intervene positively in the life of a child facing numerous challenges. Thank you!
I've been a CASA for 10 years, the last 3 of which have been in Anne Arundel Ct., MD. With training and regular supervision, I've been able to effectively support 3 children in the county's child welfare system. All have faced significant challenges but my role as the person who is asked by the court to focus on their best interests has allowed me to make what I believe is an important contribution to their well-being. It is an unique opportunity to work one-on-one with a child who needs the support a CASA volunteer can offer.
I have been a CASA volunteer since 1997 and am also proud to be part of the CASA staff. I have seen first hand the positive difference having an advocate can make in the lives of children in the foster care system. I look forward to the day when every child in foster care in Anne Arundel County has the benefit of a Court Appointed Special Advocate. Our CASA volunteers are the best!!!
I have advocated for 6 children in the foster care system as a CASA volunteer. It would be hard to imagine where those children would be today if they had not had a CASA to be sure that the system was working in their best interest. I have been impressed with the support that volunteers receive and the dedication of supervisors/case managers.
CASA provides a very valuable service to abused and neglected children that are having to navigate the foster care system. These children are often faced with traumatic and complex family situations and their needs can easily slip through the cracks as the "system" tries to help them. A CASA is necessary keep the needs of the child in mind and support the often overburdened social workers.
CASA is very supportive with training of its volunteers and with acknowledging their importance for each of these children. As a volunteer, I feel totally supported by CASA staff in helping me do my best for these children.
After taking a year off from being a CASA for some family health issues, I have just started a new case, my fifth since becoming a CASA in 2006. I cannot find words to say how much coming back to this work means to me - to help change for the better the life of an abused or neglected child is the most rewarding (and sometimes, heartbreaking) volunteer job EVER. Despite a foster care system that tries to do the best for these kids, it is impossible for the caseworkers to know the kids the way a CASA does - DSS staff have so many kids on their caseloads, while a CASA focuses on one child or sibling group at a time. Fulfilling the dual role of mentor to the child(ren) and eyes and ears for the court is challenging, and the support we CASAs receive from the professional staff at AA Co. CASA is a big part of how we can do this work to the best of our ability!
As a CASA I can make a difference in the life of a child in foster care. The Anne Arundel County CASA organization makes this possible by training me and providing professional social worker oversight - thanks to them, I am helping to change the world, one child at a time!
Becoming a CASA has been the single most rewarding experience of any volunteer activity which I have been involved. It cannot be understated how vital our role as CASA's are in the cycle that kids in foster care must endure. Multiple placements, change of caseworkers, change of status within the system, multiple school changes due to placement changes, health and mental issues, abuse, neglect, possible substance abuse or sexual abuse. This is a day in the life of a foster child. As CASA's we become institutional knowledge of the child within the ever changing world around them. Without our reports to the court, the picture of the child would be incomplete. And I have witnessed first hand how our reports are treated by the system. The CASA report is the first report the Master reads. It is the most objective look at the child, but it is also the most intimate look, revealing personality traits and items or help the child may need. These kids deserve what every child deserves, love, stability, consistency, a safe environment. We cannot erase what parental failure has wrought, but we can certainly speak up on their behalf so their voice is heard.
After leaving the workplace I found I had time on my hands and wanted to do something useful. Becoming a CASA certainly has fulfilled that wish. I advocate for two teenage siblings who have become part of my life on a weekly basis and who I am happy to say have learned to trust me. Trust is a hard concept for children who have been exposed to the worst possible parenting, have experienced loss of innocence at a young age and have grown up in several placements. We all look forward to our weekly get togethers, and another small point, they actually answer the phone when I call rather then text!
The siblings are currently in separate placements, as a CASA I now see how critical we are in terms of continuity in their lives. After a year, I am the only one who is still part of their lives as caseworkers, therapists, and placements change frequently. Remaining objective can sometimes be difficult, these kids are absolutely amazing, resilient and lovable. Every child should have someone to stand up for them. That's the beauty of the CASA program.
I was a Court Appointed Special Advocate for twin girls in the foster care system for nine years (from the time they were12 until they aged out of the system at 21). CASA trained me and helped me navigate the social services system, the education system throughout this period and reviewed my twice yearly reports to the court. I visited the girls regularly, attended the planning meetings for them, did regular school visits, had contact with their therapists etc. I think my greatest achievement was re-uniting them with their biological parents (the girls had been adopted due to the mother's age at birth and the adoptive parent abused the girls). Anne Arundel CASA is a wonderful organization; the staff operate as a team, and there is no fat in the organization. Fellow volunteers are wonderful.
Anne Arundel County CASA has made such a positive difference in the lives of the children in foster care in our community. The advocates work with the Courts to make sure that the child has a voice in our legal system and help to ensure a safe, permanent home for each of the children that are in our program.
This is my first year as a Court Appointed Special Advocate. The training was excellent,and the support is excellent in helping me to work with my young teen and the other professionals who help him with his special needs. My motivation is to support this youngster as he works to develop into a young man.
My fiancee became a CASA volunteer shortly after we began dating, two years ago. I don't know anything about the young person for whom she is an advocate, but I do know that my fiancee is extremely proud of the progress they've made together, and the positive impact they've had on each other. It's been inspiring to know that a single mother with 3 kids of her own can still devote time to helping others less fortunate... it should serve as a lesson to all of us!
CASA makes a real difference in the lives of the children it helps. Often, the CASA volunteer is the most significant positive adult influence in the lives of children who have known only negativity and despair. Society and families have thrown these chlldren on the trash heap; CASA volunteers pick them up, dust them off and love them.
CASA volunteers are often the one constant in a child's life. Most of the children served have been neglected or rejected by family and society; the CASA volunteer provides a much needed advocate for the child who is there because he or she want to be there, not because it is a job. Although often frustrating, working with these children is the most rewarding activity one can ever have.
Volunteering as a CASA has helped me learn, understand, sympathize, support, and nurture my community and so many of the children and families in it.
It's been a worthwhile endeavor that I will never give up and never forget.
CASA gives the volunteer an opportunity to impact a child's life. All of the CASA kids have had a very hard start in life. CASA volunteers become a mentor, a person these kids can depend on and a friend. It remains the most rewarding volunteer work I have ever done.
As a CASA volunteer for 16 years, I've seen first-hand the difference a CASA can make in the life of a child. This is a worthwhile volunteer experience that is challenging and rewarding.
I trained with the first class of volunteers in 1997 and have volunteered with CASA ever since. My experience with the organization has been so positive that I have served as a volunteer advocate for 14 children. I have seen first-hand the impact an advocate can have on the life of an abused or neglected child.
I recently completed training and was sworn in to be a CASA volunteer. I was very impressed by the professionalism and commitment demonstrated by the staff and all involved with CASA during my weeks in training. I look forward to being assigned my first case and having significant involvement with this outstanding organization.
My fiancee decided to become a CASA volunteer shortly after we met, nearly 2 years ago. I had never heard of CASA at the time, so I knew nothing about it. I know that my fiancee is very proud of having helped the person for whom she's an advocate progress and grow and move toward a happier life. That's the reason she got involved, and to see her - with her incredibly busy schedule and her own 3 kids and 3 dogs to care for - devote time and achieve positive results to this program is nothing short of heartwarming, and I'm incredibly proud of her. It has actually moved me to find a non-profit cause of my own to serve.
I thought I was volunteering to change the life of a child but my life has also been changed. This has been the hardest yet most rewarding "job" I have ever had. Speaking up for the needs of the teenager I have been working with may be completing changing the trajectory of her life. I have cried, worried, been frustrated and angry - but seeing real change happen in her life gives me joy beyond belief. I have volunteered for many organizations over the years but have never had the training and support from staff that I have had with Anne Arundel County CASA. They are truly amazing human beings and I feel so honored to be a part of this team.
Being a CASA volunteer has been one of the most rewarding aspects of my life. I have been a volunteer with CASA for over a year now and I can't even imagine not being a part of this great organization. Our work is so vital and important to the foster youths that we advocate for.
CASA is an EXCELLENT organization that gives the necessary care and compassion to abused and neglected children. I have been a CASA for almost 5 years in Anne Arundel County. In those years, I have advocated for two teenage girls. I cannot think of any other way I would rather give my time to. It is an absolute honor to work as a volunteer with CASA. Such a worthwhile cause. The CASA volunteer can make a true difference in a child's life. Recently I attended the annual CASA conference and got the opportunity to hear first hand from a panel of young ladies that were previously in the Court system. Their stories and life experiences truly broke my heart, however I was touched at their positive attitudes and awesome triumphs!!! They noted how their experiences made them who they are today and how their CASA made such a HUGE impact in their lives; so much so that they were still in touch with their CASA even though they have "aged out" of the system. The CASA staff are awesome and you always have their support and guidance every step of the way. I adore my CASA supervisor! There are so many abused and neglected children in the world who need a loving, supportive and caring person in their life. Being a CASA has blessed my life because it allows me to give back, which I think is so important to do! I would encourage others to become a CASA…. there are children that need you and can benefit from the love and care you have to give! Most rewarding!!!!
I am retired and wanted to do something with my time that was useful and would make a difference. So, after hearing about CASA on the Dr. Phil show, I volunteered. I have been a CASA for almost two years and it has been one of the most rewarding experiences of my life. I advocate for a three-year old and his 11 month old sister. I have been able to build a trust with these children and to provide a consistency in their life. Their current placement is leading to adoption and it is so rewarding to see the love these children receive from the foster parents and the love they return. How great to be part of this! My time could not be better spent.
One day while watching Dr. Phil, he talked about CASA and what a wonderful organization it was. He encouraged his audience to become a CASA volunteer. I was recently retired and had some time on my hands, so looked into it. I have never been sorry. Yes, it takes time. Yes, it takes some money. Yes, it takes patience, creativity, and understanding. But, whatever it takes, is multiplied many times in the return it gives me, and I hope and pray in the return it gives an abused or neglected child. Anne Arundel County CASA does a wonderful job reaching children in need. The children are not alone and the volunteers are not alone. CASA truly makes a difference in the lives of the children and the volunteer. Dr. Phil was right. CASA is indeed a wonderful organization.
This is a wonderful organization that takes the time to give the necessary care and compassion to abused children in the Arundel County Court system. I have been a CASA for 2 years and have advocated one teenager. She has had some really bad things happen to her and now she in a small group home for girls receiving the therapy and guidance she needs to be a healthy whole young lady. The staff is extremely supportive and caring; I could not think of a better organization to get involved in. AA County CASA, Inc. truly helps the court system ensure that details do not get lost in paperwork. Sometimes the smallest detail can be life changing for a child. Please join there are children that need you!
As a CASA my first and only case involved an infant placed in foster care because her Mother was homeless. A year later the adoption process has started for her foster parents to become her parents. What a loving and happy ending for my first CASA baby.
I am new to CASA, having just completed the training. The training itself gives a new volunteer some insight on the complexity of the tasks ahead and knowledge of the situations to be encountered. I have also observed the organization closely for the last couple of years as my wife worked with her case, and as I heard many stories of the major roles played by CASA volunteers in the disrupted lives of children.
I first volunteered at a CASA event after hearing about their cause and not thinking that I had enough time. I soon discovered that every little bit helped the children who needed help the most. Whether it is volunteering in to office, expressing a creative side through design work for events or working hands on with the children and volunteers, every moment I spend and every dollar I give, I know that I am helping an abused child, a child that through no fault of their own got the rotten end of the stick. Watching their work and hearing about the children as they grow and settle make me proud to be a part of Anne Arundel County CASA. It is through the one on one support of CASAs that these children know someone is giving them a voice and looking out for their best interest, letting them know that someone cares.
Anne Arundel County CASA is truly a special organization. The passion and dedication of the volunteers is unsurpassed. Many of the volunteers dedicate more than 20 hours per week working directly with one child who desperately needs their help. Their work prevents these children from being further abused and neglected and in many cases literally saves these childrens' lives. Our community is very fortunate to have such a tremendous group working so hard to better the lives of the children who need our help the most.
CASA of Anne Arundel County not only is staffed by those committed to protecting the abused and neglected children in the foster care system, they and their volunteers tirelessly pursue any and all means to raise funds to train additional CASA volunteers; raise awareness of CASA and its critical mission, and expand the number of trained advocates to meet their goal that every child in the system has a voice through their CASA advocate. This is not a "job" for the staff and their volunteers, but rather a commitment and a passion to save children and better our society now and for generations to come.
I have been a CASA volunteer for 14 years. The training is excellent and the supervision extremely helpful. I've had five cases, with a total of 12 children ranging in age from 1 to 21. Sometimes the parents had custody of their kids but were under supervision for past neglect. In others, the children were with relatives, group homes or foster families. In most cases, the CASA is the one constant in the child's life. Social workers, lawyers, and even judges change, but the CASA sticks with the kids. I find that judges rely very heavily on the CASA's to provide the information needed to make life changing custody decisions. It's a very gratifying experience.
Being a CASA has opened my eyes to the needs of children in Foster Care. AACCASA has given me the awesome opportunity to make a difference in the life of a foster child. The training, the supervision and support given to the volunteers by the organization is excellent.
I am a CASA. What is that you ask? It is a Court Appointed Special Advocate for children who have been removed from their home due to neglect or abuse. We are the eyes and ears for the judge who makes life altering decisions about these children only based on what they hear in court. This program was started by a judge who felt he just didn't have enough accurate information to make those decisions. We are highly trained volunteers who are assigned to one child (or multiple if children are in same family) at a time. We interview and interact with everyone relevant in the child's life and report our findings to the judge. We also create a bond with our children...we are the only person who may be with the child the entire time the case is open. Often they go from foster home to foster home or group homes, they change social workers, they change attorneys, they change schools, family and friends come and go, but their CASA is constant. We are there for consistent support, guidance and hope. A child who has been removed from an abusive situation is scared and has been betrayed by those they love the most. They don't know who they can trust, who is telling the truth, who is actually looking out for their best interest. Once a CASA is assigned, they can trust that there is at the very least one person who will do whatever is necessary to make sure they are getting the best care possible. If it is in the child's best interest to be reunified with the family, we help with that. If it is in the child's best interest to seek other living arrangements, we help with that. It is our goal to find a safe permanent home that is in the best interest of that child. We volunteer to change a child's world from hurt to hope. There is no greater reward.