Start this Summer – Make a Lifelong DifferenceLANCASTER, PA (May 29, 2014) - Imagine a Lancaster County where every child identified summer with picnics, sunscreen, vacations and leisure!
For over 400 Lancaster County youth in foster care, summer is a warmer version of the rest of the year – unheard, unnoticed, uncertain, and hopeless. Youth in foster care have experienced abuse and neglect so severe that they were removed from their homes.
Join Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) of Lancaster County’s commitment to helping victims of child abuse and neglect heal. CASA provides a qualified and compassionate court-appointed volunteer advocate to children who are abused and neglected, to ensure the fundamental human right of having a safe, nurturing, and permanent home is met.
The advent of summer marks the midpoint of the calendar year. CASA challenges you to use this seasonal milestone to begin making a lifelong difference for Lancaster County’s youth in foster care.
Anytime a child is abused or neglected, it’s a tragedy – one that all too often scars victims for a lifetime. "At CASA, we help abused and neglected children heal so they can live happier, safer lives,” stated Jessica Laspino, CASA’s Executive Director.
Studies have shown that children who have suffered abuse or neglect are more likely to struggle in school, have run-ins with law enforcement, experience homelessness or abuse drugs or alcohol.
CASA volunteers – court-appointed special advocates – make sure kids don’t get lost in the overburdened legal and social service systems. CASA volunteers stay with children until their court case is closed and the child is placed in a safe, permanent home.
There are many ways to be involved with CASA – volunteer child advocate is only one. To learn more and make a lifelong difference, join us at one of our summertime C.A.S.E. for CASA meetings. C.A.S.E. stands for Community Awareness Session on Engagement.
Summer C.A.S.E. for CASA meetings are scheduled as follows:
- Tuesday, July 15, 12:00 pm at Lanc Co Community Service Bldg, 630 Janet Ave, Lancaster
- Tuesday, Aug 19, 12:00 pm at Reinsel Kuntz Lesher LLP, 1800 Fruitville Pike, Lancaster
- Tuesday, Sep 16, 6:00 pm at CASA, 53 N Duke St, Suite 218, Lancaster
Come see audiovisual testimony from youth who have had an active child advocate in their lives during their childhood. As children, these young adults were positively affected by CASA and will share the lifelong impact of having a qualified, compassionate adult fight for and protect their right to be safe, to be treated with dignity and respect, and to learn and grow in the security of a loving family.
The sessions are free of charge and open to the public. RSVP is required due to limited seating. We know how important your time is and our program will not exceed 60 minutes. To reserve your seat, please contact CASA by calling (717)208-3280 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Not everyone can be a CASA volunteer, but everyone can be an advocate by taking steps to make our community safer for our children:
- Be mindful of the signs of abuse and neglect in children, such as a lack of adult supervision, extreme passivity or aggression or poor hygiene.
- Be aware of warning signs in parents, such as showing indifference or rarely touching or looking at their child, constant verbal criticism, demands for perfection, blaming the child for family problems or other irrational behaviors.
- If you think a child is in immediate danger, don’t hesitate. Call 911.
- If you believe a child is being abused or neglected, report your suspicions confidentially to Pennsylvania’s ChildLine and Abuse Registry at 800-932-0313.
Working together, we can end abuse and neglect so that every child has a chance to thrive.