Monday, October 13, 2014

Foster Kids - CASA Providing Help to McKean County Foster Children

There are many non-profits that have a mission to help foster children. One of the most important of these organizations is CASA, court-appointed special advocates. This national organization trains volunteers who are then appointed by a judge "to represent the best interests of abused and neglected children during a dependency case."

CASA volunteers are the eyes and ears of the court. They interact with foster youth, social workers, the judge, family relatives and any involved specialists such as child psychologists. Without a CASA, the needs of a foster child can be pushed aside by a parent, relatives or case workers. The CASA speaks for the child.

Many counties in Pennsylvania have had CASA volunteers for years. CASA has just initiated their program in McKean County, Pennsylvania. Although CASA is a national organization, there are many other counties around the country where there are no CASA volunteers.

Even though there is now a CASA presence in the county, this should not imply that all foster kids will have a CASA. The number of children entering the foster care system has been climbing steadily despite improvements in the U.S. economy. Foster care statistics reveal that there are simply not enough volunteers to handle every foster youth case.

Two of the best ways a person can become involved with helping foster children is to support CASA and services that locate a foster kid's family members. Becoming a CASA requires from 15-25 hours a month where a volunteer will work with a foster youth and their case. It is a heart-fulfilling activity.

Supporting services such as Find Families In Mexico is the other way to help these children. The first step to moving a foster kid out of the system is to locate and notify their relatives. Without completing this initial stage, tens of thousands of foster youths will remain in foster care until they age out.

Many cases have been brought to our organization by CASA. These volunteers saw where foster care agencies had failed to locate family members of several foster children and coordinated efforts that resulted in relatives being located. These foster kids are now moving through the system and into forever homes with loving, caring family members.

If you want to help foster children but aren't ready to be a foster or adoptive parent, consider being a CASA. If you aren't able to be a CASA, then support efforts to find family members. If you want to help foster kids, trust me. There is a place for you.


Richard Villasana

Richard Villasana
Find Families In Mexico

PS. Share your thoughts and ideas below and share this post with others.

No comments :

Post a Comment