Community support for CASA of Liberty-Chambers Counties was evident Saturday night as hundreds of people turned out for the 11th Annual Boots and Bandanas fundraiser.
Held at the Dayton Community Center, Boots and Bandanas is a fun night filled with barbecue, dancing, drinks, auctions and games with all proceeds going toward helping children who are going through a crisis after being removed from their homes due to abuse or neglect.
“Boots and Bandanas is our biggest fundraiser of the year. This one event gives us the support we need to sustain the organization throughout the year,” said Jacob Powell, president of CASA of Liberty-Chambers Counties.
CASA stands for court-appointed special advocate, which are volunteers assigned to each child as they enter the foster care system. These advocates look out for the best interest of the child as their case makes its way through the legal system.
“They are an objective voice that speaks on behalf of the child, an advocate who is looking out for the best interests of that particular child,” Powell said.
CASA of Liberty-Chambers Counties handles the cases of dozens of children per year. The number fluctuates as children enter and exit the legal system.
There are 11,066 CASA volunteers serving roughly 30,000 children across the state, according to CASA figures.
If you are interested in being a CASA volunteer, here are the qualifications:
- Be 21 years of age or older.
- Successfully pass screening and background check requirements.
- Successfully complete initial training provided by the CASA of Liberty & Chambers Counties program.
(30 hours of initial training plus 3 hours of courtroom observation & 12 hours of continuing education)
- Be able to make a 12-month minimum commitment to a case.
(An average of 10-15 hours per month)
- Be able to keep information confidential and work within established program guidelines.
- Be computer-literate.
To apply, go online to https://casalctx.org/volunteer/become-advocate/