March is Women’s History Month and CASA of Pinal County is expressing their deepest gratitude for the women who are standing up for abused and neglected children in Arizona.

Nearly 83% of Court Appointed Special Advocates in Arizona are female — these women are making a difference in children’s lives across Arizona, giving them a voice in court and advocating for their best interest.

“How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world,” a famous quote from Anne Frank.

One person in a child’s life who isn’t paid to show up means the world to a child in foster care. Today, there are over 14,000 children in Arizona who have been removed from their homes due to abuse and/or neglect.

Children in Pinal County desperately need stable and caring adults in their lives during a time that they need it most. We need our community to step up to be the one constant person in the life of a child who has been removed from their parents’ home.

In Pinal County, only 1 in 10 children in foster care have a CASA. Studies have shown that a child in foster care that is assigned a CASA volunteer is more likely to succeed in school, more likely to find a safe, permanent home, and half as likely to re-enter the foster care system.

CASA advocate Cathy Bednarz of Gold Canyon recently shared: “I love working with kids and there are so many children in foster care. The goal is being with them while they wait for their forever home. As much as I give to my CASA kids, I get back a million times over.”

How can you make a difference? Become a CASA volunteer, today!

Court Appointed Special Advocates are everyday community members who donate their time to be the voice for a child. CASA volunteers visit with the children regularly. They follow the progress of the child’s court case, speak with important people in the child’s life and report their observations back to the court so the judge can make informed decisions on behalf of the child.

No specific background or training is needed to become a CASA volunteer. Anyone 21 years of age or older who can pass a thorough background check and complete 30 hours of free training is encouraged to apply.

For more information, visit www.CASAofPinalCounty.org.

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Donna McBride is the CASA of Pinal County program administrator.

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