CASA Raises Over $50,000 from Community Awareness Event
Lancaster, PA (May 10, 2013) - CASA of Lancaster County held its first annual "I Am for the Child” Community Awareness Breakfast on Thursday, May 9, 2013. Sponsored in part by Heritage Hotel, the event was a smashing success. A total of $53,190 was raised which includes onetime gifts and multi-year pledges.
"Fifty thousand dollars is a clear indication that this community wants to see CASA in Lancaster County continue to help facilitate safe, permanent and nurturing homes for children who have suffered abuse and neglect. To be honest, I am truly overwhelmed by the support and look forward to continued community involvement in the CASA movement.” stated Jessica Laspino, CASA’s Executive Director.
The program presented to over 110 attendees was short but impactful. Elizabeth Brennan, Board President, welcomed attendees and shared how her five year commitment to CASA has influenced her so deeply she knew it would a be a cause she will forever be involved in.
Ms. Laspino discussed how CASA was founded nationally and how CASA came to be in Lancaster County. Ms. Laspino also discussed the organization’s future, "We will provide a CASA advocate to every child in Lancaster County that needs one by 2020, I believe wholeheartedly that this goal is not only achievable, but is necessary.” In closing Ms. Laspino shared something a Lancaster County CASA volunteer had said. "He told me that he sees his job as putting up another ladder, that his CASA youth feels imprisoned by the trauma he has suffered. The caseworker puts up a ladder, his teacher put up a ladder, and so did his therapist. It is also CASA’s job to put up as many ladders as possible – provide this youth as many options to climb up as possible. It doesn’t matter which ladder his climbs only that he does. Our youths deserve every possible chance they can get, and CASAs can be one more chance.”
The most poignant presentation of the morning was that given by Ms. Kelly Bailey. Kelly discussed the process of adopting her daughter many years ago, and the role that a child advocate played in that process. Kelly said she is thankful every day for the many people involved in making Megan a part of their family, not least of which was her advocate – someone who looked out for Megan and ensured her voice was never lost. Someone who was in Megan’s corner fighting for her before Kelly could be that person.
CASA provides court appointed advocacy for children by making sure a qualified, compassionate adult will fight for and protect a child’s right to be safe, to be treated with dignity and respect, and to learn and grow in the security of a loving family. CASA offers many opportunities to be involved in supporting children. Learn more about CASA at www.casalancaster.org or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Photo caption: Jessica Laspino, Megan Bailey, and Kelly Bailey (LtoR) at the breakfast.