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‘ROCKY’ FIGHTS FOR KIDS IN FOSTER CARE
AND IS CASA VOLUNTEER OF THE MONTH
Paragould, Arkansas – June 15, 2016 – Greene County’s Court Appointed Special Advocate
(CASA) program has selected Rocky Lindsey as the CASA Volunteer of the Month for June. CASA volunteers work with children that have been taken into foster care due to abuse or neglect. They help serve as the eyes and ears for the judge, and a voice for the child in the courtroom. Lindsey has been a CASA volunteer for more than a year and admits he wasn’t fully aware of the range of the CASA program when he signed on.
“My wife and I went through the training together and weren’t really sure what CASA volunteers did,” he said. “But, the class sessions served to fuel my interest as I learned more about the work that came with the position. My wife chooses to work with younger kids and I am working right now with a 19 year-old that has chosen to take advantage of the ‘fostering futures’ program available here in Arkansas.”
Lindsey says he and the young man talked at length about selecting to stay within the system to obtain the benefits of the program. Upon turning 18 many kids in foster care are frustrated and some are angry and choose to immediately leave the oversight of a judge and case workers. The fostering futures program asks the young person to select to stay in the system and network. In turn, they are assisted in all manner of life choices from finding employment, receiving financial support, and an opportunity to continue on in college or in a work education program. Lindsey says making the selection to continue in the court and foster program was not an easy one for his teenage boy. He spent many hours visiting and talking to get him to make the choice to give the continuation program a chance.
“The main reason Rocky is so good at this work and was able to get this outcome,” says his CASA Volunteer Coordinator Amanda Frankenberger, “is that he is always calm and incredibly patient. He keeps an even keel that helps the older kids stay focused and not threatened by the discussions. It is a wonderful ability, especially when our kids are sometimes so quick to make choices. He demonstrates thoughtfulness and then asks his kids to take the same type of behavior to think things through.”
Lindsey says he is so proud of the boy he is working with for making such great decisions. He says the young man is now working 48 hours a week at a job with a viable future. “My teenager has such potential,” says Lindsey. “There is so much there to work with and he is taking the time to see how things work out as well as developing and exploring new interests – a potentially great future!”