Today, there are more than 400 children in Travis County Child Protective Services who need CASA’s help.
Almost all of them are under the age of 5.
Currently, we are able to serve all children ages 5 and older. Those children have a dedicated CASA volunteer on their case, focused on their needs. They have someone fighting to find them a home so they don’t have to sleep in a CPS office overnight. Someone who will search for their long-lost relatives to ensure they have family members in their lives. Someone who will make sure their educational needs are being met. Someone who will remember their birthday. Someone who will keep them in touch with their siblings when placed far apart.
In comparison, at least 2 children under the age of 5 have entered the court system recently after ingesting methamphetamines. Those children do not yet have CASA volunteers by their side.
I want to help them. I know you do too.
You have an opportunity to help our community’s youngest and most vulnerable children right now. CASA of Travis County has been offered an unprecedented matching gift to help us serve children under 5.
A generous family foundation will triple your donation to CASA between now and December 31, 2017.
Will you give $50 or more to help children ages 0-4? Your $50 will instantly become $150 because of this match.
I want to tell you about Isabel.
Isabel was born prematurely. Immediately, miscommunications arose with the hospital from Isabel’s mom speaking primarily Spanish. The hospital was concerned that Isabel was losing weight and didn’t think mom was caring for or feeding Isabel properly. They called CPS and Isabel was placed in a foster home.
At first, Isabel didn’t have CASA because of her young age, but Isabel’s attorney felt that going home was right for her. The attorney specifically requested that CASA be on this case to help this baby and family navigate the complicated child welfare and medical systems, and overcome language barriers.
CASA volunteer Carmen was appointed.
Carmen got to know the family, attended medical appointments, talked with doctors, met with the foster family, and observed visits between baby Isabel and her mom. Carmen knew Isabel’s mom wasn’t an unfit parent. She just needed more information and the confidence to know she could do a good job with such a fragile child.
Today Isabel is back home with her family - thanks to Carmen’s work clearing up miscommunications, building a trusting relationship with the family, and offering them the guidance needed to learn key parenting skills.
Last year, 53% of the children’s cases we helped close reunified with their family, like little Isabel. CASA volunteers can help each individual child reach the best outcome for them personally, but we need to be able to help all children.
Will you donate today, and have your gift tripled, to help ensure that all young children like Isabel have a CASA volunteer speaking up for their best interest?
With your help, and the support of this generous matching opportunity, our goal is to begin accepting appointments for:
- All children 4 and older by March 2018
- All children 3 and older by June 2018
- All children 2 and older by September 2018
After that, we will look at how many children are in foster care and develop the next steps in the plan to eventually be appointed to every child who enters the system.
Will you help us make that vision happen?
Laura D. Wolf
P.S. Don’t forget that right now, your gift of $50 becomes $150 thanks to this generous match. I hope you won’t pass up this opportunity for CASA to help the youngest and most vulnerable children in our community. Please donate before December 31 to take advantage of this matching opportunity!
Advocacy November 2017