Dec 04 2014
I am so proud to be a CASA volunteer. It is incredibly rewarding work being able to help the most vulnerable children here in Travis County. As a CASA volunteer, my job is to keep children safe. I work hard to get children reunited with family or adopted into loving, permanent homes. Above all, I want a safe home for the child. If you will indulge, I would like to share the story of one such child.
I became Cole’s CASA volunteer when he was nearly a year old. His mom’s drug and alcohol abuse brought him into the Child Protective Services (CPS) system. Cole’s big bright eyes and happy smile capture the heart of all who meet him. It was heartbreaking to think that anyone — especially a parent— would do anything not in Cole’s best interest.
Nov 10 2014
By Callie Langford, Originally published in TODO Austin Magazine
Since retiring from a 31 year career in electrical engineering, David Rivera has spent a lot of his time doing good.
He volunteers with CASA of Travis County and other organizations, spends time gardening, plays in the praise band at Emmanuel United Methodist Church and is going into the ministry. He is currently studying for his Masters of Divinity at Southern Methodist University.
David grew up in Mission, Texas and came to Austin to attend the University of Texas. He has two sons, one in the Air Force and another who is a social worker. Read more
Oct 22 2014
October is National Domestic Violence Awareness Month and of the 21 new cases we’ve been appointed to by the middle of this month, 10 of those families (representing 22 children) have issues with domestic violence as one of the reasons the children have come into care. Statistics indicate that during an episode of violence children are at high risk of injury or death. Additionally, without intervention, children tend to repeat the behavior they have learned from their parents and those around them. We asked Shellie Ryan, Prevention Advocacy Manager at SafePlace, to talk with us about domestic violence and how we can best help these children and families:
Domestic violence is something that’s often underreported, and the reality is that it is very difficult to leave a relationship that is violent either physically, emotionally, sexually or psychologically.
There are a lot of reasons why a domestic violence survivor may stay in a relationship and not report it, especially when they fear their children will be removed from their home. Sometimes it has to do with wanting to keep providing a two parent home for their children. Read more
Oct 16 2014
The Honorable Darlene Byrne hosted our quarterly Swearing-In Ceremony for 39 CASA volunteers on Tuesday evening. Judge Byrne’s mother joined us for the occasion and inspired her speech to attendees:
I’ve been asked many times, ‘Judge Byrne, how do you keep doing what you do?’ You’re looking at her right over there. I was blessed with the most amazing family network. I knew my grandmas and grandpas, aunts, uncles and cousins. We got together regularly. Tonight my mom and I were talking about that richness of family that weaves a fiber of support. You know people have your back, you absolutely know it to the core of your being. That’s what the kids we serve lack. They so need you to start helping them weave that network and that web of support for them. For many of these kids, often you are the only face that’s a constant. I cannot tell you how critically important that is, how rich that is, how admirable that is… I think you are all incredibly courageous and compassionate and giving. Read more
Sep 26 2014
We want to extend a big thank you to the more than 2,300 superheroes for children who joined us at the 2014 CASA Superhero Run on Sunday, September 21st at the Cedar Park Center!
Fortunately we had some amazing volunteer photographers (plus a very fun photobooth) to capture all of the event day superhero excitement!
We hope you enjoy checking out these photo albums and stayed tuned for video from event day... coming soon! Check out the photos