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The Rolla Daily News - Rolla, MO
  • CASA volunteer recruitment is April 8

  • If someone told you that for about 10 hours of your time each month you could become a hero to a child who are been abused or neglected, would you be willing to consider it?
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  • If someone told you that for about 10 hours of your time each month you could become a hero to a child who are been abused or neglected, would you be willing to consider it?
    The board, staff and volunteers of Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) for children of south central Missouri invite the public to attend a volunteer recruitment event from 5:30-7 p.m. Tuesday, April 8, at the Kensington Club House. A light supper will be served.
    CASA volunteers need no special education or background. Training will be provided, along with ongoing networking opportunities with other volunteers.
    “We’re there for the child,” said CASA volunteer Joyce Wakefield. “It is so important to be there and let that child know that we care about them.”
    There is a special need for adults to work with teenagers in foster care. CASA is recruiting volunteers and especially male volunteers to work with teenage boys. Children who are in foster care when they are teenagers are rarely adopted or placed with permanent guardians.
    Statistics for these youth are pretty grim.
    Studies show that as many as 30 percent of them are homeless at some time. Nearly 60 percent drop out or fail out of high school and almost 50 percent are unemployed or have jobs that earn below the poverty rate.
    Founded in 2005, the main CASA of south central Missouri office is headquartered at the Phelps County Courthouse, 200 N. Main St., Suite 242, in Rolla.
    The program currently has 41 volunteers serving 83 children with 47 in Phelps County, 35 in Texas County and one in Pulaski County.
    Some volunteers work as a team with another volunteer, or couples may work together, or many like to take one case at a time keeping their schedules more flexible.
    The newest volunteers who have completed training and been sworn in are Ken Kwantes, Brenda Smith, Courtney Milligan, Jana Bramer, Zach Lee and Linda Giger.
    “We have children waiting to receive a CASA,” said CASA Executive Director Judy Waters. “Our volunteers play such important roles in the lives of these children. The volunteers are appointed by the judges and have seen the amazing impact they have had.”
    For more information contact the CASA office at (573) 458-6240, email to casaphel@fidnet.com or visit www.casascmo.org.
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