Letter to the Editor: Crista Horn

Bourbon County CASA
PO Box 146

Fort Scott, KS 66701


February 22, 2023

 CASA worth volunteering for

I follow where my heart leads me and my heart lead me to CASA 25 years ago.

I began this journey as aCASA volunteer in 1998. I heard a friend talk about this organization she was volunteering for that
involved working through the court system with abused and neglected children. I had never heard of CASA, but when I heard the words children, abused, advocate and court I knew this organization was meant for me.

And all these years later, I continue to become more and more excited about the impact of CASA volunteers in our community. I would say becoming a CASA is one of the best choices
Ive made. Ive been the Program Director of Bourbon County CASA for 19 years now and have been blessed to work with some of the most amazing volunteers to be found.

As a CASA volunteer I would spend anywhere from two to 10 hours a month on a wide variety of selfdirected tasks, including visiting my assigned foster child, attending court hearings, interviewing families and service providers, connecting parties to each other, and writing reports to the Court. I am the advocate the voice for the child; this means getting to know the child, but also getting to know their familys case deeply so that I can speak with confidence about what I believe best for the childs longterm health and happiness.

Because my position as a volunteer is appointed by the court, I am a direct conduit to the judge on the case and my informed opinion carries significant weight when decisions are made. Because I am a volunteer and do not have a large case load (yes, I am the Program Director but outside of my job I still serve as a CASA volunteer), I can become the expert on the needs and situation of each family.

And because I have access to nearly unlimited training and support, I can help connect dots and solve issues that could cripple the case (and the childs wellbeing) otherwise. My very favorite
part of this work is when my actions directly dissolve barriers to the progress of the case, helping the child and easing the stress and difficulty of everyone involved. I love seeing anxiety leave faces and
peace come in its place.

Consider becoming a CASA if you love children. Or, even, if youre not particularly drawn to children, you love furthering justice and peace. Or if you simply want to challenge yourself and broaden your
understanding of your community. You dont have to be retired (many CASAs have fulltime jobs) or have any background in legal matters. All you have to have is willingness to step in, to learn, and to act.

Spring training begins in April. Call Bourbon County CASA at 6202152769 or email
bbcocas[email protected]
to learn more about becoming a CASA volunteer.

Christa Horn

Bourbon County CASA

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