On Tuesday, July 29, the Children’s Center will host an informational session about becoming a volunteer advocate for children in foster care. “People who are even the slightest bit interested in becoming a Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA) are encouraged to come to our center, get a tour and talk to our volunteers and staff,” said Sandy Barber, Executive Director of the center. It will be come and go from 4:30 to 6:00 pm at the center at 112 West Fifth in Bonham.
“We promise there will not be any hard sales job,” said Barber. “We understand that this volunteer opportunity is not right for everyone. Those who come but later decide not to apply to become a volunteer will still walk away with a better understanding of what we do and other ways they might choose to support our important mission.”
CASA is appointed by the district judge each time a child is removed from their home because of abuse and neglect. Currently, the local program needs 3 more volunteers so that every child in foster care has an advocate.
For those who are interested in becoming a CASA, there will be an application, background checks and personal interview to complete before training begins on Sept 2. Training classes are held in the evenings from 5:30 to 9:30 pm on Sept 2, 9, 16, 22 and 23. There is also reading and activities to be done at home, when it is convenient for the volunteer. All who successfully complete the training and background checks will be sworn-in as CASA advocates in the morning on Sept 26 in the 336th district court.