There’s a misconception that children in foster care did something wrong — that they were taken from their family because of a misdeed or because they misbehaved. This idea couldn’t be further from the truth. Children in foster care are there for their own protection because they’ve been abused, neglected or abandoned by a parent or caregiver. When they enter foster care, their world is turned upside down. In addition to the abuse or neglect that they have experienced, being thrust into a new environment can also be very traumatizing.
However, there are people in our community who are improving foster children’s lives. CASA volunteers, or Court Appointed Special Advocates, work one-on-one with a child or sibling group in foster care. They get to know the child, and work with the professionals in the child’s life to develop a plan to help them heal and stay on track academically. In addition, CASA volunteers provide crucial information to judges so the court can make more informed decisions.
Each April, our country recognizes National Child Abuse Prevention Month. This year, we encourage you to make a difference in a foster child’s life by becoming a CASA volunteer. Learn more at www.slocasa.org
Teresa Tardiff, San Luis Obispo