Columbia Gorge CASA welcomes new volunteers

January 7, 2006

Columbia Gorge CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocates) has added new volunteers.

Darlene Daggett, Linda Casady, Laura Buhl, Izetta Grossman, Carley Wilkins, and Tina Haynes were sworn in by Judge Paul G. Crowley Dec. 5.

These new volunteers bring the organization’s volunteer count to 28 who serve Hood River, Wasco, and Sherman Counties.

Columbia Gorge CASA received a National CASA grant this past summer which enabled the organization to expand their volunteer recruitment efforts in the Gorge and hire Tiffany Kenslow as their Volunteer Recruitment and Training Coordinator.

Her focus in recent months has been on community outreach and education, volunteer recruitment and training of new volunteers.

The CASA program currently serves about 50 percent of children in dependency cases in Hood River, Wasco and Sherman counties, but there are also currently more than 120 children on the “wait list.” The goal over the next year is to increase the volunteer base to cover all dependency cases.

“Working for CASA is a unique opportunity; the organization gives staff and volunteers the ability to make a difference, every day. The need for volunteers is great and they are the backbone of this program; they ensure the program is able to meet the needs of each community’s children,” said Kenslow.

CASA volunteers are everyday people who are appointed by judges to advocate for the best interests of abused and neglected children. The volunteers work with the kids, the attorneys, social workers, parents, teachers, and foster parents to learn the child’s circumstances and ensure that the child doesn’t “fall through the cracks” of the system.

If you are interested in becoming a volunteer please contact the Columbia Gorge CASA at (541) 386-8447 in Hood River or (541) 296-3404 in The Dalles.

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