FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Photo Courtesy Nevada CASA Association
CASA DAY AT NEVADA STATE LEGISLATURE TO TAKE PLACE
THURSDAY, MARCH 16
Court Appointed Special Advocates to Raise Awareness of Challenges Facing Child Welfare System, Need for More Volunteers
CARSON CITY, NEVADA (March 9, 2023) – The Nevada CASA Association’s CASA Day at the Nevada State Legislature will take place Thursday, March 16. Nevada’s volunteer court appointed special advocates (CASAs) serve as the voices for children in the foster care system. On CASA Day, they will be at the legislative building to enlist the support of Nevada’s legislators for future CASA state funding to recruit and train more volunteers, as well as amplifying awareness for CASAs’ role in mitigating the challenges facing the child welfare system.
A CASA is a trained volunteer, sworn in and appointed to a specific case by a family court judge. CASA volunteers’ goal is permanency for their child or children. They advocate on behalf of their children’s physical, educational, medical, emotional and social needs. CASA volunteers research information and talk to everyone involved in the children’s lives. Each CASA spends approximately eight to 10 hours each month on their case, and have contact with social workers, attorneys, parents, teachers, family members, foster parents, health professionals and, of course, the children themselves.
Nevada CASA by the numbers (2021 data):
“With more than 4,000 children in care on average in the state, we always have a need for new CASA volunteers,” said Jane Saint, executive director, Nevada CASA Association. “With families encountering additional stress during the COVID-19 pandemic and its aftermath, the need for more caring adults to invest in children in care continues to be urgent.”
In addition to serving as part of the children’s case team, CASA volunteers establish a relationship with them, getting to know their unique history, while providing consistency and stability during an extremely difficult time in their lives. CASA volunteers are asked to remain with their children until a permanent home is achieved.
“Every case is different and there aren’t always easy solutions to help these children,” says Lorrie Curriden, who has served as a CASA volunteer for 28 children over two decades. “My door is always open to children I’ve helped in the past, and it’s a privilege to be that phone call, because you realize you’ve made an impact and they feel they can depend on you.”
Jasmine, a Nevada teenager and one of 28 children Curriden has been assigned as a CASA volunteer, appreciated having a CASA and encourages others to consider becoming one.
“[Curriden] is always there, always texting me. It feels nice to always have her around me,” said Jasmine. “Not only did I grow with Lorrie, but I feel Lorrie grew with me as well. And who doesn’t want to grow? Do it because you care, and if you care, I think you gotta be a pretty great person.”
To learn more about CASA volunteer opportunities, visit https://www.nvcasa.org/get-involved/.
The Vox Agency
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