Life as a foster child is repetitive and uncomfortable and often lacks stability. Foster kids are moved in, and then uprooted from their homes at the drop of a dime, never really getting a chance to connect with the adults that take care of them. The Atlanta CASA organization has teamed up with the city to recruit patient and loving people to provide a constant in a foster child’s life.
CASA volunteer Susan Glatt shared about her time with the organization.
“I’ve been a volunteer since 2015. I represent children in foster care in the court system and in the daily navigation of their lives. I represent the best interest of the child,” said Susan.
CASA volunteers are assigned a child’s case and follow that child through fostering all the way to adoption. They take on responsibilities like appearing in court, providing essentials, and developing a relationship with them. These volunteers give foster children the sense of security and stability that’s missing from their day-to-day lives.
“I’ve been working with one girl that’s changing foster placements. She’s been in that placement for a number of years and the change is traumatic... I’m in touch with her therapist, her foster parents, her DFCS case manager... I’m trying to learn about her new school and I’m in touch with her,” Susan said.
Susan emphasized the importance of the program.
“A healthy child has five adult touchpoints. You become one of those touchpoints that they can count on...you have influence in helping them make good decisions and developing good judgment which has to be a win-win for society.”
Every child should have a safe, loving and permanent home but many do not. Each year in Fulton County, over a thousand children become entangled in the foster care system due to no fault of their own, but because they are victims of abuse and neglect.
Atlanta Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA), Inc. is a 501(c)(3) non-profit volunteer program committed to making the juvenile justice system and the community more responsive to the needs of abused and neglected children. The program provides trained, supervised community members to become Advocates, speaking for the best interests and safe permanent placement of children involved in dependency proceedings in Fulton County Juvenile Court. CASA Advocates serve as the eyes and ears of the court and advocate for abused and neglected children, one child at a time. For more info, visit AtlantaCASA.org.