Bigger than Austin: CASA is a national volunteer movement

Apr 23 2012

By Laura Wolf

There's something both inspiring and reassuring to feel that you're part of something bigger than yourself. Our desire to be part of a community, and the satisfaction we feel when we know we've found one, explains so much about how we choose to spend our time: from book clubs, to faith congregations, to Facebook, we are always looking to be part of something. And if we can be part of something that helps another person while enriching our own lives, so much the better.

That's one of the many good things about CASA. Even as one of our volunteers here in Austin is intensely focused on the needs of the individual abused or neglected child whose best interest she is charged with representing, that same volunteer is part of an awe-inspiring network, a nationwide community, of volunteers across the country, all speaking up for the best interest of abused and neglected children. Last year, the National CASA Association reports that 75,000 volunteers advocated for roughly 240,000 children.

Paige Beard of National CASA, Laura Wolf – Executive Director
Paige Beard and Laura Wolf

I admit that I spend most of my time focused on the issues facing CASA here in Austin, specifically how we will meet our goals: to provide a CASA volunteer for every child who needs one, to maintain and enhance the quality of our advocacy for children, and to ensure a diverse and inclusive organization. But I was reminded last week about the value of being part of something even larger when we welcomed Paige Beard from National CASA to Austin and had the joy of listening to her remarks at our Annual Volunteer Appreciation dinner. Paige brought us all a moment of reflection on the whole community of CASA around the nation --- a moment to think gratefully of all the volunteers and CASA staff in communities large and small, urban and rural, throughout this country, speaking up for children in need. Thank you all.

 

CASA at the Texas Capitol in 2011
CASA volunteers and staff from across Texas gathered at the Capitol in February 2011.