Monday, Dec 20, 2021
December Volunteer of the Month
Mary joined CASA in 2019 and is on her third case. A former foster mom, adoptive mom, and retired teacher, she is no stranger to the ins and outs of the child welfare system, and decided to bring her extensive experience working with children to our organization.
Mary is currently serving on two cases, advocating for a total of 6 children that range from pre-teen to toddler age. The children on her first case were split between kinship and foster placement. They all had experienced abuse and were put into counseling, and while on the case Mary has gone to great lengths to make sure they all feel cared for and supported during their time in the court system. She coordinates visits for the siblings on one of her cases so they can keep in contact, and makes regular visits to each of their placements, which are over 20 miles apart. She visits their schools, visits their counselors, doctors, and more, all while keeping the legal team in the loop of what each child needs.
“It takes a lot of work and a lot of planning. But I want all the kids to feel loved.”
Knowing one of the children enjoys science, she worked with A Precious Child for CASA’s recent Holiday gift drive to get him science-themed toys, and has also worked with A Precious Child to get them each birthday packages. When the children are upset, or needing to calm down, their caregivers know to call Mary.
While Mary and the legal team work on the children’s permanency plan, she has also made strides in making sure the children get the educational support they need. One of the children has severe ADHD, and she advocated to the teacher and legal team for him to get a “bouncy chair” to help him focus in class. One of her other children she serves was found to need extensive help developmentally and with his speech. Mary helped him to get special writing tools that are designed to help children with their fine motor skills, among other efforts like bringing workbooks to the children to ensure they are getting the stimulation they need.
CASA Volunteers like Mary are a huge part of why our program succeeds in advocating for children. She brings care and consistency, and we thank her for the huge amount of effort she has placed into her cases. Congratulations for being our December Advocate of the Month!