• Urgent volunteer need: 41% increase in children appointed to CASA

    Apr 22 2015

    Urgent volunteer need: 41% increase in children appointed to CASA

    CASA of Travis County has been appointed to 260 new children in the first 3 months of 2015. Throughout January, February and March we’ve averaged a 41% increase in child appointments in comparison to the same 3 months in 2014. At the same time, our numbers of CASA volunteer applications have been slowing down.

    Children need your help right now.

    If you've been thinking about volunteering, now would be a great time to start training to be an advocate. Check out our website or join us at an upcoming Info Session on May 5 or May 18 to learn more and apply. Read more

  • Documenting the Volunteer Training Experience: CASA 101

    Apr 16 2015

    Documenting the Volunteer Training Experience: CASA 101

    By Janet Woodrome

    Note from CASA: Over the coming weeks we're going to be sharing a series of blog posts by volunteer trainee Janet Woodrome. Janet is a former journalist who is documenting the training experience class by class, sharing her questions, fears, expectations and more! For those of you interested in volunteering, we hope this series will offer some insight into the training process. If you're already a volunteer, we hope this brings back fond memories of your own time in training with Lydia, Wendy, Shannon and the many members of our staff who help with this process. We hope you enjoy the first post this series - Janet's experience in CASA 101!

    There was a CASA coffee mug parked at my table as I settled into my chair for my first training session. “I am a powerful voice in a child’s life” was written on the side.

    During the next three hours, I saw the magnitude of that statement as the CASA staff and trainer painted the picture of the role and huge responsibility of a CASA volunteer. This was CASA 101. Read more

  • Senate Resolution Honors CASA’s 30th!

    Apr 09 2015

    Senate Resolution Honors CASA’s 30th!

    We would like to thank Senator Kirk Watson for introducing Senate Resolution No. 408 in honor of our 30th anniversary. 

    WHEREAS, The Senate of the State of Texas is pleased to recognize Court Appointed Special Advocates of Travis County, also known as CASA of Travis County, and its many dedicated volunteers, who are celebrating the organization's 30th anniversary; and

    WHEREAS, CASA of Travis County was created in 1985 to provide assistance, encouragement, and support to children and youths who are in the court system as a result of abuse or neglect; and

    WHEREAS, CASA of Travis County is one of the largest CASA programs in Texas and serves a greater percentage of children in the county court system than any other major urban CASA program in Texas; it has more than 600 volunteers who act as guardians ad litem for more than 1,600 children each year; and

  • Meet Volunteer Advocate Steve Janda

    Apr 03 2015

    Meet Volunteer Advocate Steve Janda

    By Callie Langford, Originally published in TODO Austin Magazine

    Steve Janda grew up in rural South Texas and, after graduating from nursing school at UT Galveston, decided to move to Austin where he’s lived ever since.

    He currently considers himself a full time volunteer. He serves on the board of his local fire department, is part of the Hays County Master Naturalist Program under Texas Parks and Wildlife, does wildlife management on his own land and has volunteered with CASA for 3 years. Read more

  • Alpha Kappa Alpha: Over a decade of partnering with CASA

    Mar 18 2015

    Alpha Kappa Alpha: Over a decade of partnering with CASA

    By Callie Langford

    We recently spoke with Reshanta Stewart, a member of Beta Psi Omega, the local alumni chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha (which is the oldest Greek-lettered organization established by African-American college-educated women). Reshanta has been coordinating our partnership with the women of Alpha Kappa Alpha since 2005 and has helped build and enhance this wonderful relationship for CASA.

    “I joined this chapter in Austin in 2005 and CASA was hosting the Casas for CASA program raffling off playhouses. We would help sell tickets at the mall. I don’t know what prompted me to say, ‘Hey, let’s do other stuff for CASA,’” said Reshanta. She struck up a conversation with a CASA employee, learned more about the program and finally asked what else CASA needed. “We started doing an Easter Egg Hunt. We did a Halloween party one time that was really fun. And it went from there!” Read more

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