January 2018 | In This Issue
Nutrition for the Traumatized Child

Obviously, good nutrition is important for all children. For children who have experienced trauma either prenatally (such as prenatal exposure to drugs, alcohol, or stress) or in early childhood, good nutrition is a critical component in their brain function and healing.
Chronic stress can actually impact the way a person digests and absorbs their food so in children with higher cortisol levels due to early trauma, supplements may be needed.
When a child eats regularly scheduled nutritious snacks and meals, their blood sugar levels remain constant. This allows an optimal opportunity for learning and for regulating moods.
Dehydration causes all kinds of problems including decreased cognitive function, headaches, fatigue, poor concentration, increased anxiety, and mood swings. Getting enough water and reducing or eliminating caffeinated and carbonated drinks impacts everything from sleep to emotional regulation to playtime. 

Remember to keep your CASA Volunteer file up-to-date with your current
auto insurance card, driver's license, and contact information
And remember to visit your CASA child face-to-face at least   once a month.
(CASA) Court Appointed Special Advocates provides a voice for children as 
 they navigate through the court system to help them reach a safe and 
 permanent home. Be the 1. Be A CASA. Volunteer Today!
Happy New Year and Welcome Back!

As we begin this New Year and reflect back on 2017, we can more clearly see what a difference the CASA program has made in the lives of the children we serve. In our 10 parish service areas, CASA Volunteers advocated for 523 children in 2017.  We also recruited, trained, and swore-in 58 new CASA volunteers in 2017. Through commitment and dedication, the efforts of CASA volunteers have continued to make a positive impact on abused and neglected children within our communities.  Please assist us in being the difference by committing to recruit at least one person as a CASA volunteer for 2018. We look forward to this new year and appreciate each of you who have committed to serve with us in 2017".  


St. John & St. Charles - Tuesday, January 9, 2018 
 Tangipahoa & St. Helena- Wednesday , Jauary 10, 2018
Ascension & St. James - Thursday, February 15, 2018
Livingston  -  Tuesday, February 20, 2018
East & West Feliciana - Wednesday, February 21, 2018

Click the button below. 
Happy Anniversary!
Thank You For Your Dedication and Commitment to CAS! 
Danielle R. - 4 years

Melanie S. - 1 year

Congratulations and Welcome To Our Newest CASA Advocates!

Camraniesha I. 
Congratulations On Your New Forever Home!
On December 21st, these kiddos got their Christmas wish and were adopted by their forever family. We are so excited that CASA was able to be part of the journey.
Jan Pretus
Florida Parishes Volunteer Spotlight

Jan was sworn in on August 17, 2010 and has been an active advocate since that date, often serving on multiple cases at a time.  Jan has been an advocate to 15 children over the last 7 years. The outcomes of these cases have been very different; some were adopted, some went home to their parents, and others were permanently placed with relatives.  Jan has been a fierce advocate for all of these children both in and out of the court room.  She has made sure that the children have received necessary services and were in the best placement possible.

Jill Johnson 
River Parishes Volunteer Spotlight

Jill Johnson
CASA Volunteer from Assumption Parish
My name is Jill Johnson.  I am originally from New Orleans, Louisiana.  I worked as a paralegal in New Orleans and Metairie before moving to  Paincourtville , Louisiana with my children 1 4 years ago.  I have been a CASA volunteer serving in Assumption Parish for 2 years. Being a CASA has been a wonderful experience.  Seeing the children benefit from something I recommended is a great feeling.  My favorite part of being a CASA is visiting the children.  All of the children I have worked with are amazing.  They have been through so much and are so joyful and strong.  I enjoy spending time with them.  One thing I never expected about becoming a CASA is how happy these children make me.  I am so blessed to have gotten to know them.  I look forward to being a CASA for many more years. 

Words from her supervisor:  "Until recently, Jill was the only advocate in Assumption Parish carrying a case load of 3 cases with a total of 5 children.  She has never missed a visit within her control and has gone beyond the call of duty to meet the needs of her cases.  Jill is a comfort to the children, a resource locator for the family, an unofficial recruiter in Assumption Parish, and an asset to the CASA family. We salute you for your commitment and dedication to your community and the CASA Program!" 

2018 New Year's Resolutions for CASA Advocates
It is a brand new year and a great time to set goals for the next twelve months.  We often make resolutions to save money, exercise more, eat right, read our Bible every day, spend more time with family, etc.  Those are wonderful resolutions, but we would like to challenge all of you to make some CASA Specific Resolutions.  2018 gives us a fresh and clean slate to start our advocacy plans for our CASA children.  Setting goals can be very motivating and leave you feeling more confident, not to mention helping us be much more effective in all that we do.

New in-service opportunities coming soon!
We hope you have all had a safe and wonderful holiday season. We would like to introduce you to our counselor, Marcy Willett, who works in St. Charles and St. John Parishes. Marcy is a Licensed Professional Counselor and a National Certified Counselor. She has worked with children and families for four years in both a community and office setting. Marcy is trained in trauma focused therapy and Cognitive Behavioral Therapy.

CAS offers counseling services in St. John and St. Charles Parishes to children and families dealing with child abuse and neglect. Counseling is also offered to children and families in the community that are dealing with daily life stressors, relational issues, and behavioral concerns.

To find out more information about clinical services or request counseling services please call one of the local offices listed below.
LaPlace Office                                                                  Luling Office
2840 West Airline Hwy., Suite G                                       131 Lakewood Drive, Suite 1
LaPlace, LA 70069                                                            Luling, LA 70070
Phone#: (985) 536-8384                                                     Phone#: (985) 785-5226
Fax#: (985) 536-8386                                                         Fax#: (985) 785-5395

 Please submit any questions, comments, and suggestions for future articles to agolden@childadv.net, afuller@childadv.net or mwillett@childadv.net
Child Advocacy Services hopes all your holidays were filled with precious memories and special blessings!

As we begin this New Year, maybe you are looking for a resolution to get more involved in your community, to give back, or to volunteer. We at CAS can help you out with that! As the winter season ends and spring begins, we will have many fantastic opportunities to offer you.

For instance, in March we will be having our 7th Annual Voices for Children Bowl Flag Football Tournament. Do you have a group (business or friends) that wants to try and take home the trophy? Or maybe you aren't into the competition and just want to lend out a hand? Either way, we would love to have your help!

Another great opportunity on the horizon includes the entire month of April! April is Child Abuse Prevention Month, and CAS will once again be launching our Pinwheels for Prevention campaign. This campaign is an excellent chance for you to get behind a great initiative that spans state-wide. Pinwheels for Prevention is an initiative that allows us to create a dialogue in our community on the importance of child abuse prevention. We will be planting pinwheel gardens all across our ten parish service area, and if you want one of your own, please let us know! You can sponsor a larger pinwheel garden at a location of your choosing, or even just grab a "Garden to Go" and have a small pinwheel garden at your home or business. Both would be an excellent way to show your support for this cause! We would love for you to come by and ask how you can take part!

So please keep us in mind as you all make your resolutions for this New Year! And again, we hope everyone had blessed holiday season, and that the New Year begins with a bang!


The St. Charles Parish Library and Child Advocacy Services are partnering to present the Triple P Positive Parenting Program for parents of children ages birth to 12.

Triple P is designed to give parents simple and practical strategies that they can adapt to suit their own values, beliefs, and needs to raise confident and healthy children. Parents will learn how to encourage behaviors they like, deal with problem behaviors, become more confident as a parent, be realistic about parenting, and take care of themselves.

There are three seminars in the Triple P series. Participants can attend all three or only the ones that interest them. Each seminar will last approximately 90 minutes, with time at the end for any questions. There is no homework and no follow up.

Angela Golden, Prevention Services Coordinator for Child Advocacy Services, will present the seminars.

"The Power of Positive Parenting" will take place Wednesday, January 17 at 6 p.m. This seminar is for every parent who has wondered, "Why does my child do that?" It will help parents understand the reasons why children do what they do so that they can positively guide their behavior.

"Raising Confident, Competent Children" will take place Wednesday, January 24 at 6 p.m. During this session, parents will find ways to help their child become confident and successful by sharing ways to encourage children to be respectful and considerate, get along with others, feel good about themselves, and become independent problem solvers.

"Raising Resilient Children" will take place Wednesday, January 31 at 6 p.m. Parents will learn ways to help their child manage positive and negative emotions to be able to cope with disappointment and handle stressful situations in a healthy way. 

Registration is requested. Register online at www.bit.ly/scpltriplep or by calling the staff at the West Regional Library at 985-785-8471.

Brave children tell their stories.  Courageous adults help these children through their trauma and assist them in finding a safe future.  Buttons of Bravery represent the journey of one child for a year under the care of Child Advocacy Services. 

Help hold them together through their experience by participating in the Buttons of Bravery Child Sponsorship Program. 

Thank you to our new and/or continuing Button of Bravery Child Sponsors:  

Dayna Braud - My Colorful Soul 
Shirley Hsing
A+ Corporation 

Dear Community Supporter,
The Giving Season is upon us!  If you are a current 1541 Button of Bravery Child Sponsor and have already decided to continue into the New Year, we thank you! Your participation makes a direct impact in the lives of children. Your investment helps provide volunteer advocacy, forensic interviewing, prevention and community education, and awareness in our ten parish service area.
With your help, CAS served 523 children with 212 volunteers through our CASA program in 2017.  Of those children, 172 were placed in safe and permanent homes.  Additionally, we performed 618 forensic interviews and provided 413 hours of counseling to over 95 children through our CAC program.
Child Advocacy Services, Inc. is a 501(c) (3) nonprofit organization. We appreciate your consideration to start or renew your child sponsorship for 2018.  Please remember, your end of the year contribution is tax-deductible.

Be the thread of hope for a child!

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