Wiping away tears while sharing the stories of her life as a child and teenager, featured speaker Mullin Evans told the packed house at the Havener Center on the Missouri University of Science and Technology campus about her struggles between ages four and 13, then becoming homeless, then being placed in the foster care system.
Evans, a psychology major at Missouri S&T, spoke at the Ninth Annual Justice IS Served! event recently hosted by the Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) of South Central Missouri. Evans is also a CASA volunteer working primarily with teenagers and sharing her experience with them. She was named the 2018 CASA Rising Star of the Year.
“These children need someone with confidence and someone to celebrate with them,” she said. “CASA means giving kids hope for a rewarding future and CASA is not the end of their story.”
She explained that the CASA volunteers actually choose the kids they work with. The volunteers are matched with children in the foster system. Evans pointed out that they become “our kids”.
The annual fundraiser had many sponsors. Phelps County Bank was the Presenting Sponsor. Judges from the 25th Judicial Circuit served the full-line breakfast to the guests. The judges included John Beger, Mark Calvert, Ken Clayton, Michael Headrick and Missouri Court of Appeals Judge of the Southern District Mary Sheffield Wray.
Pulaski County Associate Judge Headrick also spoke at the event. “It’s really an honor to witness the impact of the CASA volunteers on these children,” he said. “They have experienced instability because of their home life and the CASA job is like no other, Their job is extremely important for the child. When the child wins, we all win.”
CASA Executive Director Matthew Evans introduced Nick Swanson, a member of Fraternal Order of Leaders at Missouri S&T, who announced that $5,000 would be donated to CASA from the proceeds of the annual Casino Night held on Wednesday prior to the St. Pat’s celebration. “My father was one of these kids in foster care and I heard the horror stories,” Swanson said. “We’re very committed to CASA to help these kids.”
For more information about contributions or to become a volunteer, contact CASA of South Central Missouri at 573-426-7437 or email Janece.email@example.com. The office is located at 400 North Main Street, Rolla.