CASA spreads mes­sage of hope

Sunday Star - - FRONT PAGE - By JOSH BOLLINGER jbollinger@star­dem.com

EAS­TON — Give hope to chil­dren and ad­vo­cate for them when they need it most — that was the mes­sage of CASA of the Mid-Shore’s Cel­e­bra­tion of Chil­dren hol­i­day lun­cheon Fri­day, Dec. 1, in Eas­ton.

The an­nual lun­cheon is not only a way to thank ev­ery­one in­volved through­out the year with the chil­dren’s ad­vo­cacy pro­gram, but it lends the op­por­tu­nity to give at­ten­dees a glimpse into the CASA story, Ex­ec­u­tive Di­rec­tor Robin Daven­port told the crowd in the Tide­wa­ter Inn’s Gold Room.

CASA stands for court-ap­pointed spe­cial ad­vo­cate. Called CASAs, those who vol­un­teer with the or­ga­ni­za­tion are of­fi­cers of the court who pro­vide in­for­ma­tion to judges and mag­is­trates to as­sist them with mak­ing de­ci­sions about the fu­tures of vul­ner­a­ble chil­dren who have been hurt, mis­treated or ig­nored by their par­ents, Daven­port said.

CASA of the MidShore started 27 years ago serv­ing one county, and now ser ves four — Tal­bot, Dorch­ester, Queen Anne’s and Kent coun­ties — and this year was able to pro­vide a CASA for ev­ery child that needed one.

“There’s some­thing else that the longer I’m with CASA, the more I see there’s some­thing else that hap­pens in the process of our work that is equally as im­por­tant. It’s this in­tan­gi­ble thing called hope,” Daven­port said.

“So the chil­dren with whom we work have been hurt, mis­treated or ig­nored by their par­ents, and the re­ally sad re­al­ity about that is that they fre­quently be­lieve

JOHNNY O’BRIEN

ROBIN DAVEN­PORT

STEPHANIE NAGEL

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