Sometimes children do not have someone to speak up for them in the court system. Six individuals are hoping to change that and were sworn in as Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) Wednesday morning.
On General Sessions Judge Ryan J. Moore’s first day in office, he signed a memorandum of understanding to bring the CASA program to Warren County. The program’s mission is to support, develop, expand and unite local CASA programs in recruiting and training volunteers who stand up and speak out for Tennessee’s children who have been abused and neglected.
“Our great community recognized the need for CASA in Warren County and joined together to make it a reality. The need for CASA is further magnified in a recent DCS statistic which shows Warren County’s dependency and neglect, in-state’s custody population is the highest per capita in our 14-county region,” said Moore.
Court Appointed Special Advocates are volunteers who are trained to advocate for the children in juvenile court and speak up for the best interest of the child. A CASA volunteer will be a lifeline to stability for the children experiencing neglect and abuse.
“Our advocates have worked extremely hard to complete the extensive CASA training and each one brings a unique set of talents. I am very thankful for the passion and energy that our advocates will bring to the difficult cases that will come before the court. These advocates will be a tremendous help in determining what is in the best interest of the child,” said Moore.
The CASA volunteers who were sworn in Wednesday morning were Debi Romerosa, Donna Turner, Dennis Kronlage, Pam Youngblood, Dale McDaniel and Debbie Helton. CASA Works Executive Director Wanda Strayhorn was present while they were sworn in and called them the “true pioneers of Warren County.”
This program will provide support for Warren County children going through difficult times and will provide an extra set of ears in the courtroom that will help determine the best interest of the child.