The Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) program of the Second Judicial District has selected Barry Bryant as Volunteer of the Month for July. Barry has served as an advocate since April of 2018. Volunteers serve as sworn officers of the court, and help to investigate and gather information on cases when children are removed from a home due to abuse or neglect. The CASA information is provided to a judge who makes the decision whether appropriate steps have been taken to return the children to the home or to find them new, safe and permanent homes.
“I saw a news story about the impact CASA makes on children in foster care and thought what a great way to give back ” Bryant stated. When asked what surprised him about CASA work Bryant responded “The amount of caring people that are looking out for the welfare of these children on a daily basis. Just the other day I witnessed an attorney cry tears of joy after telling children they could spend extended time with their family.”
He encourages others to volunteer and become a CASA. “ Spend one hour with one of these kids and you will see why we do what we do. Becoming a CASA volunteer is something you can do in your spare time and the CASA coordinators are there to support you through the journey.” “If I can make a difference in a child’s life they may then grow up to help others in their life, so the cycle continues” Bryant added.
When asked what the best part of being an advocate is Bryant stated, “Seeing a smile on a child’s face and knowing that you are one of the people responsible for putting it there.” To find out more on how you can become a child advocate with CASA visit www.neacasa.org or call 870-935-1099.