Nonprofit Spotlight: CASA of San Luis Obispo County
Time has flown by for CASA of San Luis Obispo County. This year, they are celebrating their 25th birthday and the 2,600 foster children they have served since then.
Not only are they a little older and a little wiser, they are only getting better with age. More and more children are receiving the assistance they need to navigate the foster care system with each coming year.
Now that’s something to celebrate. Cue the confetti and cheers to that!
Currently, 190 children in San Luis Obispo County are being served by 150 volunteer advocates. Though this is a record high for CASA SLO, this means that fewer than half of the 478 children are receiving the mentorship they need. CASA needs more than 200 volunteer advocates to serve them.
CASA SLO Executive Director Teresa Tardiff says that many CASA volunteers find the experience of advocating for their child more rewarding than anything they have ever done. Volunteers enjoy reading or playing catch with their child, going to the library or on a hike or just visiting in the park. These children want to have fun with someone who really cares about them. Spending time this way the volunteer learns about the child’s needs and desires and can make recommendations in the child’s best interest.
Children crave stability: knowing that they have a home to go to, that they will have enough to eat, that there are people they can count on. More than half of children in foster care in SLO County undergo three or more home placements during their time in the system. A CASA volunteer provides them with a consistent, familiar adult during an uncertain time. In addition, with the help of a constant adult mentor, they develop critical life skills that they would not have otherwise.
Interested in making a difference for these wonderful kids? Become educated. Attend a CASA SLO volunteer information session
, which are held at their office on 75 Higuera St. #180 at noon every fourth Tuesday of the month (excluding December). The next one is on October 23, 2018.
Volunteer information sessions are also held at select Starbucks locations
across the SLO County every second Wednesday of the month at 6:30 PM. On October 10, 2018, an information session will be held at 581 W. Tefft St. in Nipomo.
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