Meet Volunteer Advocate Dawn Crane

Meet Volunteer Advocate Dawn Crane

Apr 09 2013

Dawn Crane was born in Michigan and raised in Ohio. Being stationed at Fort Hood brought her to Texas over 20 years ago. She has a one child and 3 dogs. Dawn’s an entrepreneur with two small businesses including a cosmetics company that she will be re-launching this summer. Read More

I would not be here without my CASA volunteer’s help

I would not be here without my CASA volunteer’s help

Apr 04 2013

By Suamhirs Rivera, Originally written for and published on the National CASA blog

April is National Child Abuse Prevention Month in the United States. But I was born in Honduras, and no one was there to prevent what I endured at the hands of my father.

He was a doctor with a good job. He also was often drunk and abusive. By the time I was 9, he had left 57 scars on my body. He came home drunk one night and began beating my mother. I jumped in to defend her, and he attacked me too.

After that he was gone. But as the oldest in the family, I had to work. By age 16, I had come to America to support my family. I went to live with my godmother, but she began selling me to whoever paid the most. It would be six months until the police rescued me. Read more< Read More

Presidential Proclamation: Child Abuse Prevention Month 2013

Presidential Proclamation: Child Abuse Prevention Month 2013

Apr 01 2013

A PROCLAMATION BY THE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA

America is a country where all of us should be able to pursue our own measure of happiness and live free from fear. But for the millions of children who have experienced abuse or neglect, it is a promise that goes tragically unfulfilled. National Child Abuse Prevention Month is a time to make their struggle our own and reaffirm a simple truth: that no matter the challenges we face, caring for our children must always be our first task.

Realizing that truth in our society means ensuring children know they are never alone -- that they always have a place to go and there are always people on their side. Parents and caregivers play an essential part in giving their children that stability. But we also know that keeping our children safe is something we can only do together, with the help of friends and neighbors and the broader community. All of us bear a responsibility to look after them, whether by lifting children toward their full potential or lending a hand to a family in need. Read the full proclamation.< Read More

Judge Byrne swears in 40 people to advocate for kids in Austin!

Judge Byrne swears in 40 people to advocate for kids in Austin!

Mar 21 2013

We had a huge crowd at our Swearing-In Ceremony Tuesday evening. We had 40 advocates sworn-in by Judge Darlene Byrne plus tons of family and friends cheering in support! Today we wanted to share some of Judge Byrne’s words to volunteers from that evening:

I’m so impressed by the courage you’re showing by being here, the sacrifice you’re showing by being here. One of the most precious things in our life is time. You can’t make it and you can’t get it back… once it’s gone it’s gone. Your actions being here tonight - giving your time to kids - gives me a great deal of hope for our community.

What you’ve decided to do in this journey you’re joining me and each other on is to try to make that one difference for a child. We may not be able to change the world, but if we can change, in a good and positive way, the life of one person, there’s a trickledown effect. It just multiplies exponentially… the people that you impact through that one human touch that is positive, good, safe, healthy, supportive, nurturing, and constantly there. Read more< Read More

Engaging fathers on CASA cases

Engaging fathers on CASA cases

Mar 18 2013

By Greg Trottie

If I were to try and identify what seems to be a similar aspect in CASA cases I’ve worked on, including my work with CASA programs in Louisiana and Illinois, it would be the uneven efforts and/or expectations between mothers and fathers in child welfare cases. Sadly, too many fathers are either AWOL, incarcerated for vital chunks of their children’s lives or they’re present but may not be as significant to the process as they should be.

The child is in the care of the state and all the parts of the machine have began churning in order to return the child home or place them with relatives to achieve permanency.  During this process sometime we don’t shine the light under the paternal rock as long as we should. What can be discovered underneath can turn out to be a valuable key to permanency as well as the child’s emotional well being. Read more Read More