Heart of Missouri CASA

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Heart of Missouri Court Appointed Special Advocates’ mission is to train and support volunteers to be exceptional voices for every abused and neglected child in Boone and Callaway county family courts.

They believe that all children have the right to safe, healthy, stable homes, free from abuse and neglect. A CASA volunteer, serving as a court-appointed advocate, is trained to promote and pursue the best interest of an abused or neglected child in court, and prevents the child from getting lost in the system by being sensitive to the child’s needs and presenting these needs in court. The role of the CASA volunteer in a child abuse or neglect case is to investigate the circumstances surrounding the case, make an independent evaluation with recommendations regarding actions the CASA believes are in the child’s best interest – both short and long term, and to monitor the case until a permanent placement is achieved. Through these advocacy efforts, CASA is working with the Court to ensure that every child has a chance for a brighter future.

casalogoIn 2012 they had 55 CASA Volunteers who served 102 children in Boone County.Last year alone, CASA Volunteers logged 2,113 case hours, drove 16,702 miles for their cases, completed 348 hours of continuing education, 840 hours of basic training, and 68 hours of advanced training for working with older youth. They also held 14 informational meetings for prospective volunteers in 2012.

They are swearing in their FIRST group of CASA Volunteers on April 30th at 1:30 pm who will serve in Callaway County. Prior to this (starting in 2006) they only served on Boone County cases. Heart of Missouri CASA serves the 13th Judicial Circuit which is comprised of Boone and Callaway Counties.

April is a busy month for Heart of Missouri CASA as it is Child Abuse Prevention Month. Check out some of the events and volunteer trainings they have coming up:

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7th Annual Mizzou Baseball and Softball Clinic | April 15 & 22,  5:30 – 7:30 pm
Heart of Missouri CASA and the University of Missouri Baseball and Softball Teams invite children ages 5-12 to come practice hitting, pitching, catching, and more at the Dan Devine Indoor Training Facility on the MU Campus. Family and friends are welcome to attend the Clinic and Special guest Truman the Tiger will be on hand for photo opportunities! The Clinic costs $25 for one night or $35 for both nights, and each participant will receive an event t-shirt and a light snack.

Heart of Missouri CASA also invites local foster children to attend the Clinic at no charge to their families. To make this opportunity available, Heart of Missouri CASA is seeking community members and businesses to sponsor a foster child to attend both nights of the Clinic for $35. All proceeds raised from the Clinic help Heart of Missouri CASA provide trained volunteer advocates to children in the Family Court System who have experienced abuse and neglect. For more information, to register a child, or to submit a Foster Child Sponsorship, visit our website at www.heartofmissouricasa.org or call Kelly Hill at 573-442-4670.

Upcoming info meetings for those who want to learn more about what it takes to become a CASA Volunteer: 

  • Wednesday, April 10th from 6:30-7:30 pm: CASA Volunteer Informational Meeting at 607 E. Ash St in Columbia. Please use the rear entrance of the Alternative Sentencing Center.
  • Wednesday, May 1st from 6:30-7:30 pm: CASA Volunteer Informational Meeting at Callaway Electric Cooperative at 1313 Cooperative Drive in Fulton
  • Thursday, May 9th from 7-8 pm: CASA Volunteer Informational Meeting at 607 E. Ash St in Columbia. Please use the rear entrance of the Alternative Sentencing Center.

May 23 – June 27th: New Volunteer Training Class

April 24th: CASA Day at the State Capital (sponsored by MO CASA Association)

April 26th: MU Kappa Alpha Theta’s “Mi CASA et SU CASA” fundraiser

Please support Heart of Missouri CASA! Visit their website here and connect with them on FacebookTwitter and Pinterest.

 

Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Missouri

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Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Missouri, a mentoring program in Columbia, Mexico, and Moberly, holds itself accountable for children achieving measurable outcomes, such as educational success, avoidance of risky behaviors, higher aspirations, greater confidence and better relationships. Big Brothers Big Sisters pairs children ages 6-14 with screened volunteer mentors and supports these one-to-one mentoring matches as they enjoy activities in the schools and in the community.

The local agency serves 500+ children yearly and has a waiting list of 86. To learn more, enroll a child, volunteer or donate, visit www.bigsofcentralmo.org or call 573-874-3677.

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Currently they are gearing up for Bowl for Kids’ Sake – an annual fundraiser to be held Saturday, April 20th at Community Lanes in Moberly and Saturday, May 4th at Town and Country Lanes in Columbia. For more information contact kerrie@bigsofcentralmo.org. You can also register for the Columbia Bowl for Kids’ Sake by clicking here.

Please support this great organization that is doing some fantastic work in Mid-Missouri!

You can also connect with Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Missouri on Facebook and Twitter.