June 9, 2021 - Savannah CASA, with the help of Juvenile Court Judge Cole, Judge Formey and Judge Grindle Kramer, swore in 13 new Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA) volunteers on Wednesday, June 2, 2021 at the Chatham County Juvenile Court. Savannah CASA has been diligent in recruiting, training, and swearing in community volunteers to reach the goal of serving 100 percent of children in foster care within Chatham County.
The volunteers recently completed 30 hours of in-class and online training as well as 10 hours of court observation in order to serve as a CASA. The new volunteers are passionate community members with unique professional and personal experiences. The Savannah CASA volunteers sworn in this month include: Elle Deich, Laura Hostettler, Katie Fitzhugh, Elliot Szabo, Tandy Nicole, Michelle Meyers, John Peterson, Elizabeth "Liz" Fryman, Christine Nye, Glory Padgett, Alexander Griffin, Kayleigh Roncone and Cammie Camarillo.
A CASA volunteer is appointed by a Chatham County Juvenile Court Judge to watch over and advocate for children who have experienced abuse and neglect to make sure they don’t get lost in the overburdened legal and social service system or languish in an inappropriate group or foster home. Volunteers stay with each case until it is closed and the child is placed in a safe, permanent home. By advocating on the child’s behalf, a CASA volunteer amplifies the child’s voice to ensure that their needs, desires, and challenges are heard.
“From a Judge’s perspective, we deal with a lot of really challenging cases and there is a lot of digging to find out what will be best for the children while lawyers are advocating one way or the other. To have someone who knows the child, who knows the family, who has been to the home or been to where the child has been and can come in and say ‘Here is what I think is best for the child...’ is an amazing perspective to have in the courtroom,” states the Honorable Judge Cole.
For those who are interested in helping to prevent child abuse and fight for the best interest of children in our community, visit https://www.savannahcasa.org/volunteer