In 2017, Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) of Linn County served 221 children in 2017. And yet, the demand is greater than the number of trained volunteers. There were 68 children on a waiting list for a CASA volunteer in February 2017. Thanks to a grant from Samaritan Albany General Hospital, CASA was given the ability to 17 new volunteers in 2016, bringing the county total to 64.
Tammy Reeves is Program Manager at CASA of Linn County. But she’s more than an employee, she also volunteers as an advocate. CASA trains volunteer advocates and matches them with children who have been removed from their homes and placed in foster care due to abuse or neglect. When a volunteer like Reeves is matched with a child, she investigates the child’s situation, facilitates support services and advocates for the child in court.
Ask Reeves to tell you a favorite story about a child she’s helped, and she won’t hesitate a second. Her face glows as she recalls the situation.
“I was matched with a child who had been placed in a foster home, but the home was not a good match,” Reeves said. “We were able to move him to a new home, and it eventually resulted in him being placed in a home that is well on its way to becoming his forever home. If CASA hadn’t been in his life, he probably would have been stuck in a hard situation.”