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Columbia Gorge CASA welcomes 7 new CASA volunteers to its team of Court Appointed Special Advocates. Each of these volunteers completed an extensive screening and training process before they were sworn in on March 4th by Judge Wolf. 

The thing I am looking forward to the most as a CASA is getting to know the child and establishing the necessary rapport with all involved to hopefully help the court understand what is truly in the best interests of the child,” expressed new volunteer Carol Hayes. “I firmly believe that CASA plays a role that cannot be understated, and I am proud to be a part of it.”

Now that these volunteers are sworn in. They will be court appointed to advocate for the best interest of a child who has experienced abuse or neglect. It will be their responsibility to meet with the child regularly and submit a report to the court any time that child’s case is reviewed. CASA programs in Oregon receive their authority and guidelines under ORS 419B.112. 


“Our volunteers bring a unique perspective to the court room. They aren’t paid to provide this service; they are doing this solely out of a desire to see more positive outcomes for children in our community,” explained Executive Director Christopher Janetzko. “Their advocacy is essential to giving our local judges a fuller picture of these children’s experiences in foster care.”


Over the past calendar year Columbia Gorge CASA advocated for around 80 children in Hood River, Sherman, and Wasco Counties with the help of over 40 volunteers. This was a 30% increase from the prior calendar year.


There are still many children in our region who could benefit from having an advocate for them. CASA’s next training for new volunteers will start in the spring.


Photo: New volunteers Kym Anderson, Robert Delaney, Carol Hayes, Renee Miller, Amy Spring, Suzanne Titus Israels, and Becki Vital with CASA Program Coordinator Leah Campbell and Judge Wolf.

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