Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) is accepting applications from the community to act as advocates for children who have been removed from their families. Judge Mary Ann Ullman is behind the effort to bring the CASA program back to the county. CASA has been holding meetings and putting together a board of directors. Executive Director, Ashley Frank, can be reached at 610-301-8634. You will be required to fill out an application, submit 3 reference forms (2 non-relative) and go through a background clearance. You can go online and fill out the application at http://www.casaberks.org/pdf/volunteer_application.pdf. Once submitted you will be called for an interview. The first meeting is November 17th from 6-7pm at the West Lawn/Wyomissing Library. RSVP required due to limited seating.
If you are interested in making a difference in a child's life this may be exactly what you are looking for. You can work as much or as little as you choose. You will have full access to case files and counseling files. You will report your findings directly to the judge. There are times when children need to be removed from homes for their safety. There are also many more cases when children are removed on false allegations and with the intent of collecting from the large source of money that the county receives for placing children in foster care. There are even more incentives to adopt children out to strangers. This money is our tax payer dollars and could be used to keep families together when wrongly torn apart. According to Pennwatch, in 2014-968 children were removed from their homes. That is an average of 80+ children a month. Surely not all these removals were warranted. If you would like more information on becoming a CASA volunteer please email me at the above referenced address. Our children and our families need and deserve the oversight in the family courts. This is your opportunity to step up and be a part of the solution.