An editorial appeared in the March 13 edition titled "Build safer community for children”. The piece correctly identified several area support organizations and projects that people could participate in to help children reach there full potentials. I am writing to include the Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) of Luzerne County to this list of worthwhile organizations. CASA of Luzerne County is a nonprofit child-advocacy organization established in 2013 to serve abused and neglected children. A CASA volunteer is a trained community member, appointed by a judge, to represent the best interests of a child who has been found dependent (that is, abused and/or without proper parental care) in court. Volunteer advocates are empowered to independently investigate each child’s situation, then provide the court with a written report and recommendations as to what permanent placement best serves that child’s needs.
CASA of Luzerne County currently has 28 advocates serving 47 children, which is approximately 10 percent of the children in Luzerne County determined to be dependent and in foster care. Our mission is clear: To advocate for the best interest of abused and neglected children under the court’s jurisdiction, ensuring that each child’s immediate needs are met and that a permanent plan for the safety and security of the child is implemented.