HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) — A swearing-in for new CASAs, court-appointed special advocates, took place in Dauphin County, although not in a courtroom.
Dauphin County President Judge John Cherry swore in eight new members over Zoom.
They are now officially court-appointed special advocates for Dauphin County. Their mission, to serve as an independent set of eyes and ears fro the court for children in the dependency court system, reporting back to the judge, keeping the child’s best interest at heart. Even more important now.
“As the schools closed these children who were already experiencing anxiety and loneliness were shut off from the many people they had relied on to help with their adjustments, teachers, friends, family members. Knowing this every day each of us can reach our goal of becoming a connection a voice,” executive director Pfau Laney said.
COVID 19 changed the training this year, from in-person to online learning.
“As president and on behalf of the board of Dauphin County CASA. I would like to congratulate and thank all of you for your time and talents in assisting the court with the children of Dauphin County, especially in this difficult time it shows how dedicated you are to have not been deterred when you had to change from live training to virtual training.” president Lori Serratelli said.
PACASA has concerns with COVID-19 stay-at-home orders and children who are exposed to abuse or neglect.
The governor’s budget does have funding for PACASA and the nonprofit is hoping the legislature will keep it in place.
Dauphin County’s CASA started last July and with the new volunteers, they are now 17 members strong. If you would like to donate to your local CASA, you can find them here.