The story of a CASA child

A Child's Story

(The names and story details have been changed to protect the child’s privacy.)

Working for the best interests of a child in need.

Eleven year old Stacy was living with her grandmother when her mother was released from prison. Even though her grandmother had custody, she allowed Stacy to live with her mother. Within a matter of months, Stacy began to make statements that her mother’s boyfriend had been sexually molesting her. Her grandmother was her legal guardian, yet allowed Stacy to remain in this unsafe environment. Her mother was soon hospitalized after a stabbing attack by the same boyfriend who was sexually abusing Stacy.

Stacy told the DHS investigator that she was fearful to return to her grandmother’s home because she was afraid her grandmother would return her to her mother. Stacy was immediately removed and placed in the Laura Dester Shelter, then placed with her step-father and step-siblings. The District Attorney charged her mother and boyfriend with sexually abusing a minor and terminated her mother’s parental rights shortly after.

Stacy, a very bright outgoing child, was exposed to more of the adult world than any eleven year old should ever know. However, she remained very much a young girl enjoying dolls, kitty cats and computer games. Her schoolwork was average and her teachers and counselors expressed concern about her constant need for attention. She was placed in a foster home after her step-father’s home was also determined to be unsatisfactory.

Tulsa CASA volunteer stepped in here.

The CASA volunteer assigned to Stacy’s case visited regularly over a one year period. She took on a very complex situation and worked diligently to communicate Stacy’s best interests to the Judge and other parties on the case. The CASA volunteer met with Stacy’s teachers, family, therapists and DHS workers to continually monitor her progress and safety. At her last visit to the foster home, the CASA reported that it was a loving, nurturing home – a dream visit that any CASA advocate would love to experience.

The CASA volunteer was extremely pleased with the placement; Stacy seemed so happy, and the foster parents were loving, kind, and committed. A few months later, Stacy was adopted by her foster parents and her case was closed.