CASA Up Close | May 2018
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
  • Letter from the Executive Director
  • Welcome New CASA Volunteers
  • Upcoming Training Dates
  • Advocate Permanency Social
  • Information Sessions
  • Advocate Continuing Education
  • Kids Helping Kids
  • Events Benefiting CASA
Letter from the Executive Director
I am so proud of all of our CASA Youth who successfully transition into independence. They grow up in less than ideal conditions and still find a way to thrive.

I was reminded of their strength this month when I was honored to attended the college graduation of Justice. She has been in the foster system since birth and never had much stability. When she was placed in a shelter in Comal County as a teenager, she met her CASA volunteer for the first time.

She had a goal of graduating college and never lost focus. She is a true example of why we can never give up on children and why it is important to help them when they need our support.

She had a strong voice of her own and advocated for herself in court, and continues to advocate for foster children today - often speaking at events, talking to legislators, and being a positive example for those still in care.

Congratulations Justice! We could not be more proud! Please honor her hard work and success by watching a video with her story.

Norma Castilla-Blackwell
CASA of Central Texas Executive Director.
Welcome New CASA Volunteers
Sworn in May 9th, 2018

CASA Executive Director Norma Blackwell, Rick Patty of Hays County, Christine Henley of Comal County, Nancy Gardner of Hays County, Judge McClenahan, Kim Francis of Comal County, Barry Gold of Hays County, and CASA Board President JoAnne Germer.
Sworn in May 15th, 2018

Christine Zunker of Guadalupe County, Judge Melissa McClenahan, Carol Magloff of Comal County, CASA Administrative Coordinator April Castro, and CASA Board President JoAnne Germer.
Become a CASA Volunteer
Upcoming Training Dates

Wednesdays 
San Marcos  
June 20 - July 18 
1 to 5 p.m.   

Thursdays
New Braunfels
June 21- July 19
4:30 to 8:30 p.m.

Check out our calendar for dates and times for the rest of the year and for information on how to get enrolled. Submit your application for an upcoming training here.
For more information on training courses, contact Volunteer Coordinator Samantha Mundine Coleman at 512-392-3578, 830-626-2272, or by email .

Training is required for all new Court Appointed Special Advocate volunteers.
Celebrating the End
On May 14th, CASA honored 25 advocates whose cases have closed or reached permanency in the last six months!

Comal County District Attorney Jennifer Tharp and CASA Board President JoAnne Germer thanked our volunteers for being the consistent adult in foster children's lives and for helping children to "grow their roots and give them wings."

Thank you for not only your advocacy, but your care, concern, and time! As District Attorney Tharp put it: It's not just the time you put on a paper document, it's the time that you stay up late worrying about these kids...these kids that you treat as your own children and grandchildren.
"Voices" Information Sessions
Want to learn more about the role of a CASA Volunteer?

Come to our one-hour information session and hear how our volunteers advocate for children who have been abused and neglected.
 
New Braunfels 
Wednesday, June 6th, noon 
CASA office

San Marcos 
Wednesday, June 20th, noon 
Historic County Courthouse, 1st floor conference room
CASA staff and volunteers will be on hand to share their stories and answer your questions. 

Please RSVP to Eloise Hudson by email or at 830-626-2272. 
  
Lunch provided by Chick-fil-A.
Continuing Education
On May 4th, volunteers attended a presentation on how to best prepare for a trial situation and provide testimony. A ttorneys Angie Roberts and Whitney Hicks of the Hays County District Attorney’s office and Tracie Wright-Reneau all referenced the Holley Factors as paramount in doing the job of a Guardian ad Litem.
 
CASA advocates are required to interview all parties on a case (child, the Department, parents) on a regular basis and should provide first-hand accounts based on the advocate's observations, interviews, and interactions.

When providing testimony, only answer the question asked and do not give a lengthy explanation unless clarification is requested. If you document, document, document, you should be well prepared!

CASA of Central Texas are required to complete 12 hours of Continuing Education annually.
Kids Helping Kids
Rowan and Claire Edwards had their 7th and 3rd birthday party this month and they continued their tradition of asking guests to bring household items instead of gifts to the party. The items were donated to CASA and will be given to homes where our children are placed with relatives who do not receive the same monthly stipend as foster homes.
Young leaders on the rise! Thank you to New Braunfels Girl Scout Troop 1888 for donating over $200 worth of shampoo, soap, and other toiletries. We are grateful for the generosity of Troop 1888. Volunteers, please come by and pick up items on the way to your next visit.
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 or 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 .
June 9
Movie Hero Run
Stars & Stripes Drive-In
New Braunfels
 
Thank you, KNBT 92.1
For choosing CASA of Central Texas as this year's beneficiary of the annual Americana Jam. Thank you to all of the artists (including Randy Rogers!) for a great weekend!
CASA of Central Texas, Inc. | 830-626-2272 | info@casacentex.org | www.casacentex.org