My first introduction for Voz de Niños was through its former director, Edgar Ricalde. His wonderful presentation at a Rotary meeting informed members of the key role played by CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocate) volunteers across the state. In Laredo, though, it is better known as Voz de Niños, but it’s mission is similar to other CASA programs (the following description is from the Texas CASA website):
What A CASA Volunteer Does
CASA volunteers are screened and highly trained and then appointed by judges to represent and advocate for a child’s best interests in the child protection system. CASA volunteers are each assigned to help one child or set of siblings at a time, so they can focus on giving that child or sibling group the individualized advocacy and attention they need. CASA volunteers save taxpayers money and children’s futures by helping children find a safe, permanent homes as soon as possible.
The local Voz de Niños is currently looking for dedicated new volunteers to serve the children of the Laredo and surrounding communities. By the way, in addition to volunteers, they are looking for another fabulous Executive Director.). The numbers of children in the system is astounding. I write this as I prepare to attend the Webb County Child Welfare Board of Directors meeting where we are provided the up-to-date figures of children in foster care and facing care needs. Voz de Niños is the advocate, the go-between, the link between children and the multiple agencies they have to go through. I hope to be able to give you a little more information about the Board of Directors of Voz de Niños and the system that abused and neglected children enter.
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