CASA Spotlight - from one of our teachers...
I first heard about CASA when I was a college student in Colorado.  I knew that "someday" I would love to be involved in that organization.  I loved the idea of being able to make a  difference in the life of a child, especially being able to advocate and to be the voice of a child who might not otherwise be heard.  After becoming a teacher, I quickly realized that my job is about much more than teaching children to read and write.  As I formed relationships with my students, I heard stories that made me angry, made me cry, and made me feel helpless as I sent students home for the afternoon, weekend, and for longer school breaks.  I wanted to do something, and that's when I remembered CASA and knew that "someday" had arrived. 

My first case was more difficult than I could have imagined.  I became attached to the girl with whom I was working, and my heart broke for her.  Rather than feeling helpless as I heard her story, I felt empowered as I was able to advocate for her with DCS and with the court. One day I was sitting with her in a staffing, trying to encourage her to engage as she sat with her head down,  surrounded by the adults who had stake in her case.  When her social worker asked if anyone in the room was helpful or made her feel better, she pointed at me.  I knew then that even if the case did not end up as I believed it should, at least this child knew that she was supported.  At least she knew that she had an ally.

When friends and family ask me about CASA, they often ask, "Isn't it hard?" Being a CASA is
challenging, but extremely rewarding.  We need more caring adults who are willing to step up and make a difference for a child like her. If stories from your students have ever made you feel helpless and left you wishing you could do something, I would encourage you to get involved.   I'm glad I did.   
This month's breaking news... 

Coconino CASA for Kids is now a Qualifying Foster Care Charitable Organization!
What does this mean? The state of Arizona offers its taxpayers the opportunity to make contributions to non-profit organizations that reduce the amount of tax owed to the state or increase the amount of the taxpayer’s refund, dollar-for-dollar! There is NO NET COST to the donor, and deserving organizations and individuals around the state benefit. In order to receive the dollar-for-dollar tax credit, you must have a tax liability for at least the amount of your donation.  Click here for more information about Arizona's Tax Credit.  
Newsletters from ​CASA of Coconino County

Judge Soukup - Founder of CASA Program
In 1977, Judge David Soukup in King County (Seattle), WA established the first CASA program. The program was established to provide court-based advocacy for abused and neglected children through the use of trained and supervised community volunteers. The CASA model spread quickly as judges and communities around the nation learned from the Seattle area program. The National CASA Association was founded in 1982. Here's Judge Soukup telling you about why he created the CASA program.

Dr. Phil speaks about his support for CASA
A child has rights. As national spokespersons for CASA for Children, Dr. Phil and Robin are committed to giving a voice to the many children who fall through the cracks in the foster care system.
Speak up for a child as a CASA - be the voice of a child
The goal of CASA volunteers is to get abused and neglected kids out of the system and into safe, permanent homes as quickly as possible. Kids with a CASA volunteer are half as likely to spend time in long-term foster care as those without volunteer advocates. And, when they leave the system, kids with a CASA volunteer are substantially more likely than others to stay out permanently.