We can’t show you their faces, or tell you much about their stories, but know this; the children Big Country CASA are assigned have experienced terrible things. They come from homes of all social-economical levels across Taylor county and all have been physically abused, sexually abused, abandoned or neglected.
The children in CPS care have lost everything familiar – home, family, friends, pets and school – through no fault of their own. They leave home with next to nothing; clothes their parents may have hurriedly packed, perhaps a favorite stuffed animal, their belongings often quickly shoved into a trash bag. Their stories are heartbreaking. Their hope for the future is uncertain. And they are terrified, angry and hurt.
We are one part of a team fighting to change the course of the child’s life. We collaborate with the CPS case workers, attorneys and other parties to advocate that every need that child has is met. We encourage the families to work hard to get their families back together. But if that isn’t possible, we advocate for a safe, permanent home as quickly as possible.
While many well-intentioned people are assigned to help these children, there is no single person that can always be available, accessible, and consistently watching over them. That’s where a CASA volunteer comes in.
We are the one consistent person in their life. The one who answers the phone when they call. The one who shows up to parent-teacher conferences. The one who will come visit with a caring hug, ready to play, walk, talk and listen to their fears. The one who can be a powerful voice for them in court. The one who can see them regularly and develop a close, trusted relationship and be a source of support, encouragement and hope for them.