"Think Globally, Act Locally”
That was the phrase Kathy O’Hara thought about over and over again right before deciding to become a Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA). “I was thinking about [the phrase] and how I can reach out, make a difference, and help a couple children at a time.” And Kathy has done just that…made a difference in not just a couple, but five children. Kathy’s first case had her advocating for a sibling group of three children. The case has since ended, the children happily returning to their parents, and Kathy is now advocating for a brother and sister. “The kids start to look forward to seeing me, and building relationships with them is fun!”
Kathy has been an advocate for a little over a year. Though advocacy has been a big commitment in her life, Kathy insists that it does not take up as much of her time as you would think. “You bring more to these families than you think you are able to. Just being there and being part of it is so much.” Spending time with her family is just what Kathy does herself in her spare time. She enjoys Thanksgiving for that very reason; “It’s about [spending time with] family.”
Kathy comes to CASA having studied social work in college, and having spent the last 35 years in commercial insurance. She has been fortunate enough to travel. Last summer she experienced the "trip of a lifetime" with her husband, and spent six weeks traveling through Europe.
To anyone considering becoming a CASA, Kathy would say to sign-up and start the training. “It’s not as overwhelming as you would think!” Her experiences as a CASA have been nothing short of rewarding, and Kathy hopes that more in the Lancaster Community will soon be called to advocate.