Barry Bryant Named Volunteer of the Month for July

Barry BryantThe 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.

Barbara Kuhn Named Advocate Rookie of the Quarter

Barbara Kuhn (2)The Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA) program of the Second Judicial District is proud to announce Barbara Kuhn as the Rookie of the Quarter for the second quarter of 2018. Barbara joined the CASA team in April of this year.. 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.

 

“Barbara has hit the ground running and is advocating to the fullest extent for the children in her case”, stated Evan Clower, Kuhn’s advocate coordinator. Her knowledge of the legal system has proved very beneficial to her case work and she truly has the best interest of the children at heart”, added Clower.

 

When asked what the best part about being a CASA was Kuhn responded “helping the children, being a friend to the children, the children are number one. You feel like what you do is important and being a voice for those kids in the court system is very important. I have a passion to help them. I feel like I’m making a difference. I’m very honored to be a CASA Volunteer, this has my heart.

Many new volunteers caught by different surprises when working their first case.  “The depth of how overwhelmed the system is and how everyone is overworked was eye-opening to me.  My first case stole my heart and that was surprising. What has also surprised me is how important the CASA volunteers are“, stated Kuhn. She also encouraged others to become a Court Appointed Special Advocate adding, “Everyone that has a heart for children should do their part. There is an epidemic in this world, county, and state and our children need us.