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Writing For My Life

Traveling Down A New Path

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Volunteer Work

It’s Official…

I am officially a CASA! I am so excited and feel so honored to be an officer of the court. We were sworn in by Judge Cavanaugh and she even teared up during the proceeding. We had photos taken with her to commemorate the event. Afterward, our instructors, who are also our Supervisors, had us back at LACASA for cake and more photos. It made it such a special day. It was a happy ending to the intense training we went through, making it all worthwhile.

For those that do not know, a CASA is a Court Appointed Special Advocate for children who have been removed from their home due to abuse and/or neglect. Children who have been removed from the home are generally placed with a family member (outside of the home), if at all possible, or a foster care family. When this happens two separate cases are opened. One is for reunification with the family, handled by Protective Services, the other, handled by an Adoption Worker, takes steps to allow for the adoption of the child.

The hope is that the parents of the child will do their best to correct the problem(s) that led to the removal of the child. If they fail to do that during the course of time allowed by the Child Protection Act then the favored course is the termination of parental rights and adoption of the child.

The court wants the child to not remain in foster care indefinitely but to be placed in a permanent home as soon as is possible while still giving the family every reasonable opportunity to correct the deficits in the home.

There are many people involved in this process. The police, Protective Services, Attorneys, Adoption Services, Foster Families, the parents, the child, CASAs and many others. The CASA volunteers sole responsibility is to look out for the child’s interest and advocate in the best interest of the child.

I am delighted to be involved in this process. While I do not want to see any child abused and/or neglected. I look forward to being assigned to my first case. It is very rewarding to be able to make a difference in a child’s life. If I can make a difference in the life of just one child, I will feel that that is the reason that I was not allowed to die, when many believed my time was up…

Changes in My Life…

A doorway to another world  This archway reminds me of my life right now. I feel that I am walking through a new doorway. Starting on a new path. There have been many changes in my life of late. It is a time of transition for me. Having to accept that I will never work as a nurse again, has brought me much pain. The feeling of little use to anyone around me has left me with a longing to try something new, something to bring joy back into my life.

 

bahs-history-oldtownhall_218_240 I have been volunteering at the Brighton Area Historical Society and learning about what life in Brighton was at the turn of the 1800’s when Brighton was still called Ore Creek. Such a fascinating journey that was made to create a village and then a city. I am working on a child’s book that includes some of the histories of the village. Still settling on a time frame. Have the beginning and ending worked out in my head, just trying to fill in the middle. Don’t know how long it will take for me to write it, but at least, it is in the works…

Heart from hands. I’ve also been volunteering at LACASA answering phones and doing events as they have needed me. The events are an important part of community service and outreach. St. George Lutheran Church in Howell hosted a Community Baby Shower. That was fun and so helpful to the women in this community that needed resources, that they may have not otherwise received. There have also been fund-raisers and awareness-raisers held in the community to help LACASA obtain funding to provide shelter and much-needed services to Men, Women, and Children who have survived Domestic Violence and Rape. Presently, I am in training to become a Court Appointed Special Advocate for Children in Livingston County. The training has been quite intense this month leaving little room for anything else. I am excited and fortunate to be healthy enough to perform this service.

green thumb I believe that if I can make a difference in the life of one child through the CASA program, then I will have fulfilled a mission that I have been called to do. I was kept here for a reason. I believe that I have found my callings and can become a productive member of this society again. At least, that is my hope.

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