Wednesday, Aug 9, 2017
On Tuesday, August 8th, 2017, the Honorable Judge Priscilla Loew of the state's 17th Judicial District swore in seven community volunteers as CASA Volunteer Advocates for abused and neglected children. Others in attendance included Magistrate David Blackett, CASA Board of Directors Chair Kevin Kildow, CASA Board Member Bob Grant, as well as members of the CASA of Adams and Broomfield Counties staff.
The new advocates honored during the August 8th ceremony are: Deb Cross of Westminster, Barb Evans of Thornton, Gary Evans of Thornton, Denise Gondrez of Aurora, Stephanie Lorance of Kersey, Camille Ochs of Keenesburg,and Caroline Seals of Broomfield.
The newly appointed CASA Volunteer Advocates join over 200 other dedicated community members who have been trained and are advocating for foster children in the county's juvenile dependency court system. As officers of the court, they ensure that the children’s needs are recognized and best interests are considered both in the courtroom and in the community.
The role of the CASA Volunteer Advocate is to be an extra set of eyes and ears for the child, reporting back to the court on the best interest of the child involved in the case. They meet with the child regularly and are authorized to interview people in the child's life such as social workers, attorneys, and teachers in order to find the best possible route for the child.
"Every other person in the courtroom has to deal with compromises,” Magistrate Blackett said. “All you as the CASA are doing is telling us what is in the best interest of the child, no comprises needed.”
With more than 1,100 children each year in need of a CASA Advocate Volunteer, many more advocates are still needed in Adams and Broomfield Counties. To volunteer you must be at least 21 years of age, pass background screening and successfully complete of 30 hours of training.
The next advocate training session for Adams and Broomfield Counties will begin Tuesday September 12th. If you are interested in learning more about becoming a CASA Volunteer Advocate and the rewards that come along with serving as the voice of a child, please contact Carly Wooldridge at (303) 835-5543 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
The seven new CASA Volunteer Advocates are pictured behind (from left),
Magistrate David Blackett & Judge Priscilla Loew.