A Note from Your Trainer

“He has been abandoned, ignored, and physically abused by those who were supposed to protect, nurture, and love him.” This is a line from a therapist’s report about the kid I currently advocate for as a CASA. It’s not often…

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Jim Jamieson’s Retirement

It’s officially the month of Jim Jamieson’s retirement! As he wraps up his last training class here at CASA, he reflects on the volunteers he has had the pleasure of meeting over his last 20 training cohorts. “People who come…

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Caleb, 6 months old

file0001085844019_cropCaleb was six months old when he was placed into foster care with a caring relative. Both of Caleb’s parents abused Methamphetamines, and Caleb was born drug-affected. He had a hard time sleeping because his muscles were tightly wound from the drugs, and once in foster care he began physical therapy.

Andrea was appointed to be Caleb’s CASA volunteer. She visited him regularly and monitored everything going on in his life, talking to counselors and researching the effects of Meth on infants. Child Welfare wanted to close Caleb’s case early on, but Andrea was adamant that his parents needed more time to become stable. The court agreed with Andrea. This extra time was critical in helping the mother and father to build their circles of support and mature as parents.

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Meet Joanne Pedersen, CASA Volunteer

Pederson, JoannePassion, dedication and a commitment to her CASA kid is what makes Joanne Pedersen an ideal CASA volunteer. After witnessing what children in foster care go through in the court system, Joanne knew she was meant to be a CASA.

Who is Joanne Pedersen?

Joanne Pedersen is a full-time Practice Manager at Willamette Dental Group. She has a warm smile and an infectious laugh. She is an avid reader and enjoys spending time with her family and friends.

Why did Joanne become a CASA volunteer?

Joanne feels that working in the dental field has a lot of rewards, but she wanted to do something that would make a difference in the life of a child.  Joanne says, “I started working in the dental field to pay for graduate school, but I always envisioned that I would work with children. CASA gives me the opportunity to focus on kids.”

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Meet Kelsey Beyer, CASA Volunteer

KelseyBeyerBetween caring for family, working full time, speaking at numerous CASA events, and being a Peer Coordinator, Kelsey Beyer is busy but she wouldn’t have it any other way. She tells us she is going to volunteer for CASA until she is 100 years old!

Who is Kelsey Beyer?

Kelsey is a full-time Practice Manager at Willamette Dental Group. She also helps to care for her 92 year old grandmother and is helping to raise her teenage niece. Kelsey is not one to say no to helping others. Recently, a friend called and asked her to help catch a stray cat and her litter of kittens. Kelsey found herself with a flashlight at 11 p.m. searching neighborhood bushes for the cat and kittens.

Kelsey has been a CASA volunteer since 2010 and a Peer Coordinator (PC) for the last 4 years. PCs are experienced CASAs who have been trained to coach a small team of CASA volunteers. They provide support and direction when needed. Kelsey says, “As a PC, you’re coaching and cheerleading so that the CASA doesn’t feel alone on their case and has the support she/he needs.” PCs also provide back-up in the event that a CASA is unable to attend a meeting or a hearing due to illness or scheduling conflicts.

Why did Kelsey become a CASA volunteer?

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Meet Theresa Thompson, CASA Volunteer

Thompson, TheresaA passion for helping disadvantaged kids is what fuels Theresa Thompson and why she became a CASA volunteer in June 2013. She is in the process of closing her first case and is currently working a second case.

Who is Theresa Thompson?

Theresa says she is retired but you wouldn’t know it from how active she is in her community. Looking back, she wonders how she ever found time to work. Between Rotary, her church and being an active grandmother who cares for a 3-year-old granddaughter two days a week, Theresa has also been involved with American Red Cross. She is on the disaster assistance team. Their job is to assist community members with acquiring necessary resources to help get them through the days immediately following a disaster like a fire or flood. Theresa also spends as much time as she can with a second granddaughter in Arizona.

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