As a CASA in Williamson County (Court Appointed Special Advocate) I am assigned a child by the court to speak for IN court. My job - (although I'm a volunteer) is Guardian ad Litem - The function of the GAL is to advocate in Court for abused, neglected and abandoned children who have been declared dependent by the Court, kids that are in the system. I am basically a liaison between this child and everyone else involved, - CPS, all the lawyers, the parents, the judge, and anyone else relevant to that child's case.
At any given time I'm an investigator, a researcher, a writer (CASAs write and submit reports that become a part of the Court Record), a mediator and a listener, a cheerleader and promoter, a fighter and a defender. At ALL times, I'm an advocate, with the best interest of that child at the forefront of my work. It's not always easy, and can be trying, highly emotional, frustrating, exhilarating and debilitating, sometimes all in one day. While doing this work, I started to see the connection between being a Guardian ad Litem and a parent and began to apply what I have learned as a GAL to my own parenting. I began to see myself not only as a parent, but as my own children's ADVOCATE as well...I thought, why don't I share what I've learned with other parents, so here it is...
First and most important: Have a sense of humor!!!!
Sometimes you have to laugh to keep from crying, or screaming, or both. Humor is an invaluable tool.
Be the investigator and researcher
Be their fighter and defender
Don't miss out on who your kids are because you're too busy parenting them.
I would like to invite anyone that is interested in learning more about being your own child's advocate to attend Tuesday night's PTA meeting at Pleasant Hill School at 6:30pm. I'll be speaking about everything listed above and welcome any questions about being a CASA or about being "your own child's advocate". If you can't make the PTA meeting or don't attend Pleasant Hill - or if you would like for me to speak to your PTA or parenting group please contact me by leaving a comment below, as always, thanks for reading, and remember - you are your OWN child's advocate!
Interested in being a CASA? Check out the link below for CASA Williamson County:
For CASA Travis County:
CASA's truly make a difference, one child at a time.
It's the second hardest job I've ever done that I don't get paid for. The first one is parenting.
These Are My 5 Words...today.