CASA Up Close | October 2020
Welcome to another edition of CASA Up Close Monthly. Please feel free to contact CASA for more information about anything you read. And, as always, thank you for your continued support! Use these quick links to get involved.
In this Issue
  • Welcome New CASA Volunteers
  • Information Sessions - by Zoom!
  • Training Dates - by Zoom!
  • CASA Yard Signs
  • CASA Golf Classic
  • CASA Superhero Run
  • Payroll Deductions for CASA
  • Help Make the Holidays Special
  • Hit the Road with CASA
  • Shop for CASA
  • Events Benefiting CASA
Letter from the Executive Director
About 1,700-2,000 children and youth are reported as missing from foster care in any given year according to an annual report from the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services (TDFPS). In 2019, more than 60 of those children and youth were from our 4-county service area of Caldwell, Comal, Guadalupe and Hays Counties.

In many cases, “missing” means, in reality, that they have run away. Running away from foster care puts youth at risk of many new dangers including possible abduction, physical harm, exploitation, homelessness, substance use and more.

Some of the reasons youth give most frequently for running away are anger at the foster care system, dissatisfaction with rules of their placement, desire to be on their own and wanting to see their family. Youth are also more likely to run away from highly restrictive placements such as residential treatment centers, emergency shelters and therapeutic foster care.

They don’t understand the dangers. They are searching for safety, security and acceptance - and doing what they desperately feel is the only thing in their power to get out of a situation they don’t like. Youth in foster care need stability, someone in their corner and someone to listen and understand. They need a CASA volunteer speaking up for them and their best interest.

No child wants to be in foster care. Too often, they’re placed far away from everyone and everything they know. CASA wants to be there for these children and make sure they are connected to the services and support they need. By making sure these children’s voices are heard, our CASA volunteers can build trust with them and help reduce the risk of risky behaviors.

Children who have a CASA volunteer are more likely to receive more help while they are in the custody of the state. CASA helps to create a bigger support structure for the child. Teenagers who have a CASA volunteer to support them are less likely to run away while in foster care.

This caring adult relationship is critical to helping youth in foster care stay safe and avoid homelessness, teen pregnancy, unemployment, substance use and more. By advocating for them and making sure they have the resources and support they need, we can help fill the gap that drives these kids to leave in the first place.

To learn more about this topic, see the TDFPS Children and Youth Missing from DFPS Conservatorship & Human Trafficking Data Fiscal Year Report here.
Norma Castilla-Blackwell
Executive Director
CASA of Central Texas
Welcome New CASA Volunteers
We welcomed 6 new CASA Volunteers in September! Thank you to these wonderful community members who completed an intensive 42-hour training and stepped up to be a voice for children in the court system.

CASA is now enrolling for our final 2020 cycle of training courses. See dates below.
Top Row -The Honorable Judge David Junkin, Brandi Raschke, Training Coordinator, CASA of Central Texas Inc., and Leland Barrow of Hays County.
2nd Row -Terri Hamilton of Guadalupe County, Debbie Vasut of Comal County, and Norma Blackwell, Executive Director, CASA of Central Texas Inc.
3rd Row - Jaelynn Hall of Guadalupe County, Della Dooley of Comal County, and Ahmed Makin of Hays County.
Information Sessions Online

Meeting times:

10 a.m.

5 p.m.

Tuesdays and Thursdays

(1st and 3rd of each month)
10 a.m.

Use this link to join us at any of the times above!

Want to learn more about the
role of a CASA Volunteer?

Join our 30-minute information session and hear how our volunteers advocate for children who have been abused and neglected.

Just pick a time that works for you and use the link to join us on Zoom!
If these times don't work for you, contact Eloise Hudson and she can do a 1-1 with you at your convenience!
Become a CASA Volunteer

Last Training
Session of 2020!

October 21 - November 18
1 - 4 p.m.

Trainings held online and via Zoom.

Application deadline prior to each cycle is two weeks before start of training.

One-hour pre-training interview to occur at least one week before start of each training cycle. Mandatory 10-hour online class to be completed during the training cycle.
For more information on training courses, contact Brandi Raschke at 512-392-3578, 830-626-2272, or by email.
Show Your Spirit with a CASA Yard Sign!
You can now show your support for CASA right in your own front yard or place of business! CASA yard signs are now available! Help us spread the word!

If you know someone in your neighborhood or circle of friends who would like one, grab a handful!

To pick up a CASA of Central Texas yard sign, please email Kayla at
CASA Golf Classic
We’re extremely pleased to announce that team spots for the 2020 Corridor Title – CASA Classic Golf Tournament have all sold out! Providing every child in foster care with their very own Court Appointed Special Advocate is truly a team effort, especially as the number of children placed into State Care is expected to rise this year. Many thanks to the committed support of sponsors, underwriters and teams for helping CASA ensure the most vulnerable in our community are not left alone.
Several non-playing opportunities remain available so you can still play a major part in assisting CASA with our mission for children! Register as a sponsor or underwriter today through our website here. It’s not too late to show a hole lotta love!
Player Opportunities
Team of 4 – SOLD OUT
Individual – SOLD OUT
Ace - $10,000
19th Hole - $7,500
Front Nine – SOLD OUT
Back Nine - SOLD OUT  
Eagle - $2,500
Birdie - $1,750
*non-player benefits
Lunch - $2,500
Driving Range - $2,500
Media - $2,500
Golf Gift - SOLD OUT
Hole-in-One - SOLD OUT
Golf Cart – SOLD OUT
Golf Ball Launcher - $1,000
Printing - SOLD OUT
Beverage Cart - $1,000
Refreshments – SOLD OUT
Breakfast - $750
Hole Underwriters - $500

2020 Sponsors
Front Nine
Back Nine
Golf Gift Underwriter
Printing Underwriter
Hole-in-One Underwriter
Golf Cart Underwriter
Refreshment Underwriter
Hole Sponsors
Thank You Superheroes!
With Super September officially wrapped, we are sincerely grateful to everyone who participated and everyone who fundraised in the 2020 CASA Superhero Run!

We shine a special spotlight on mighty CASA Crusader, Mallory Grau, who fundraised more than $1,000 for CASA of Central Texas! This is the second year Mallory assisted in the Superhero fight against child abuse and neglect. Her remarkable efforts provide a CASA Volunteer for an abused and neglected child for one whole year.

Mallory, thank you so much for committing to changing a child’s story from one of heartache to one of healing and restoration! You inspire many others to do the same! 
Mallory and her family, Team Hays Heroes!
Payroll Deductions for CASA

State and federal employees may donate to CASA of Central Texas through payroll deductions under the State Employee Charitable Campaign and the Combined Federal Campaign.

Watch for campaign drives at your office, or talk to your Human Resources Representative for information.
SECC logo
CFC logo
State Employee Charitable Campaign (SECC)
CASA of Central Texas Code  
#475017 (Capital Area)
#475030 (San Antonio Area)
Combined Federal Campaign
CASA of Central Texas
Make the Holidays Special

We are looking for a lead underwriter as we prepare to make our Holiday Gift Drive 100% contact-free in October/November. We need support to purchase new technology to do this.

Please contact us at if you are interested in being a lead underwriter of this year's project to share the holiday spirit with our children.
Hit the Road with CASA

Did you know that CASA participates in the Specialty License Plate Program? You can order a custom license plate for your car with the phrase “Big Voices for Little Texans”.

Proceeds benefit Texas CASA and your local CASA program.
Shop for CASA
Still doing most of your shopping online? AmazonSmile is a simple and automatic way for you to support CASA of Central Texas every time you shop, at no cost to you.

When you shop at , you’ll find the exact same low prices, vast selection and convenient shopping experience as, with the added bonus that Amazon will donate a portion of the purchase price to your favorite charitable organization.
Just go to, log on to your existing Amazon account, type CASA of Central Texas in the search box, select us and start shopping! CASA will receive .5% of all eligible purchases when you buy from Amazon!

To date, CASA of Central Texas has received almost $650, from your shopping!
Events Benefiting CASA

CASA of Central Texas welcomes community initiatives to help promote awareness and funding for our program. By taking on this type of project, event organizers assume the responsibility of creating a successful event without a significant level of assistance from CASA. All special events and fundraising efforts conducted to benefit CASA are run by financially responsible and reputable organizations and individuals motivated by a genuine desire to help CASA. If you are interested in hosting a third-party fundraiser to benefit CASA, please review these guidelines.
CASA of Central Texas, Inc. | 830-626-2272 | |