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CASA of Philadelphia
July 2016 News
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PROGRAM HIGHLIGHTS

CASA PHILADELPHIA: IMPACT100 PHILADELPHIA GRANT WINNER!


impact - Copy 2We are so proud to announce that CASA Philadelphia received a $100,000 project grant, and a $6,667 operating grant, from Impact100 Philadelphia at the funder’s annual meeting on June 6th. Impact100 awarded the highly competitive grant to support CASA Philadelphia’s innovative Educational Decision Maker (EDM) Program which trains and supports CASA volunteers to serve as Educational Decision Makers for children and youth in foster care.

“CASA’s EDM program fills a critical need for many of the 6,100 children in foster care in our City -- particularly older youth living in group homes – who often lack any adult to act as a parent and advocate in school, said Maura McInerney, Esq, President, CASA Philadelphia Board of Directors and Senior Attorney at Education Law Center. “This grant will allow us to build on the success of our pilot program and help more children who too often fall through the cracks in the educational system.”

The Impact100 grant will permit CASA Philadelphia to double the number of children served last year and support the development of an EDM training module that can be used by other CASAs and community groups across Pennsylvania who seek to adopt similar EDM programs.

“We’re honored and thrilled that an organization like Impact100 chose to recognize and support CASA Philadelphia’s EDM program. We are extremely grateful for IMPACT100’s generous support and welcome the opportunity to train more CASA volunteers to serve as EDMs for vulnerable children in foster care.” said Terrill Carney, Supervisor of the EDM Program at CASA.

SWEARING-IN CEREMONY AND OATH RENEWAL


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Congratulations to all of our volunteers who were sworn in on June 15, 2016 and to our longtime volunteers who attended to renew their CASA oath.  It was a memorable evening, with moving remarks by Judge Margaret Murphy and a joyful reception with delicious refreshments provided by our board. 

 
Congratulations:

Samantha Adkins
Mary Allen

Nadine Atkinson-Flowers

Jen Bellot

Tiffany Braswell
Roslyn Brinkley

Mary Bryant

Madison Butt

Joseph Cartagena

Andrea Childs
Chris Cohen

Tyanna Davis

Margarita Delgado

Theresa Fletcher
Dionne Graves

Alexis Hartman

Andrea Jelin

Betsy Kessel

Rebecca Leinberger

Joy Miller

Christy Orzulak

Joanne Rafferty

Anita Schoolfield

Dylan Small

Camara Thompson

Gwendolyn Torres
Beth Vogel

Anne Umbrecht 

VOLUNTEER PROFILE: ROSLYN BRINKLEY

By Carole Cornelius

Roslyn Brinkley

No matter the love, mothers and daughters fight.  It’s what they do.  Add to that the specter of being the third oldest of eight children raised without structure, guidance, and limits and foster care placement twice within six months.  Is it any wonder that you act out in school, have poor peer relationships, practice poor hygiene and display anger, aggression and hostility toward caregivers resulting in multiple failed placements?
What you desire, even if you do not recognize it, is one calm, stable, constant and dependable person in your life.  For S.C. that person is CASA volunteer Roslyn Brinkley.

Roslyn joined the CASA team in 2014 from a commitment to give back to the community and a love of working with young people and assisting them in identifying and realizing their strengths.  An educator for 25 years, Roslyn shifted the focus of her career from pre-school to social work with first homeless families then teen moms and finally children with behavioral health challenges.  Having begun her Masters’ level scholarship with a concentration in clinical and behavioral health treatment to provide therapy to teens, Roslyn has worked with a school-based program and now is employed at an in-patient facility providing youth with acute mental health treatment.  She believes she has a special knack to work with this population, and I agree. It is a special person that works with teens, especially teen girls.  When S.C. was removed from her fourth foster home and placed at Youth Emergency Services (Y.E.S.), Roslyn visited her weekly, sometimes twice a week. The two formed a connection.  They continue their relationship and maintain telephone contact when schedules do not allow visits.  Because of her expressed interest in track, Roslyn is working to have S.C. connect with Run Philly Style.  The two also recently attended a breast cancer walk, enjoying the event together. 

HIGHLIGHTS IN ADVOCACY

In another case that involved an older youth, S.W. was a troubled teen who had been in foster care and the delinquency system for a majority of her life.  CASA volunteer Dionne Graves was initially appointed as her Educational Decision Maker (EDM) then became her CASA volunteer, as well. When Dionne first started on the case, S.W. had done poorly in her school and then was having difficulty as a pregnant teen. Dionne was able to find an alternative high school for her that was more suited to her needs. S.W. graduated from high school on June 10th.  Congratulations!

CONGRATULATIONS TO NEW PROGRAM MANAGER TRISH KINKLE!


Trish photoCongratulations to Trish Kinkle who started at CASA as a volunteer and has been employed as a CASA supervisor since 2011. She was recently promoted to her new position as Program Manager. In this position, Trish will develop our CASA intern program and work on volunteer sustainability, supervising our interns and volunteer coordinator. She will also explore the development of our advocacy in human trafficking cases at family court.

CONGRATULATIONS TO NEW SENIOR CASA SUPERVISOR CAROLE CORNELIUS!


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Congratulations to Carole Cornelius who has been employed with CASA Philadelphia as a CASA supervisor since 2012.  She was recently promoted to her new position as Senior CASA Supervisor.  In this position, Carole will supervise the CASA supervisors in their casework, oversee intake, and develop our training materials for incoming supervisors.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY CASA VOLUNTEERS!

Happy birthday from everyone at CASA Philadelphia to our volunteers who are celebrating birthdays this month:

Esther Cheung
Betsy Kessel
Nichole Maxwell
Diane Polce
Jonathan Smolowe
Christine Wilkinson

PHILADELPHIA CHILDRENS ALLIANCE (PCA) CONFERENCE

On June 17th, CASA staffmembers Carletta Chandler, Trish Kinkle, and Cynthia Mason attended the Philadelphia Children’s Alliance (PCA) conference “A Team Approach to Child Abuse Intervention.”  Highlights included the keynote address by Audrey Morrissey from My Life My Choice, a group that fights the sexual exploitation of adolescent girls through mentoring, prevention, education and advocacy, as well as a fascinating yet disturbing lecture by Jackie Block Goldstein, Private Trainer and Child Welfare Consultant, at her workshop 'Interviewing, Investigation, and Prosecution of Stranger Child Sexual Assault Cases: Lessons Learned from PA vs. Christina Regusters.’

SUMMER PRE-SERVICE TRAINING BEGINS JULY 11, 2016: Looking for active volunteers

We are looking forward to our Summer 2016 pre-service training, which begins on Monday, July 11th. If you are an active volunteer who would like to brush up on your CASA skills or spend an afternoon volunteering with CASA as a co-facilitator, please join us. Contact Cindy at cindy.blum@casaphiladelphia.org to find out how to get involved.

UPDATE: PHOTOS FOR NEW CASA PHOTO ID BADGES

Thank you so much for sending us jpeg photos for your CASA ID badges and for your patience as we distribute them. We just received our first batch from the new company and they look fantastic! 

Please continue to e-mail your jpeg headshot photos (they MUST be in jpeg format) to Cindy Blum at: cindy.blum@casaphiladelphia.org and she will be in touch with you when your badges are available. If you have any questions about the process or just want to check in about the status of your badge, please feel free to check in with Cindy.
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SAVE THE DATE

WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 3, 2016 STRENGTHENING FAMILIES PHILADELPHIA SUMMIT


indexThe Strengthening Families staff of Philadelphia's Community Umbrella agencies (CUAs) and the Department of Human Services are presenting an exciting line up of workshops by Strengthening Families practitioners from many different fields at the 2nd Annual Strengthening Families Philadelphia Summit. Explore how they believe the Strengthening Families approach is building across the city in child welfare, education, and healthcare. Delve into the theme "CommUNITY Pillars Supporting Each Other" by connecting with partners in this work and discovering new ways to collaborate to strengthen families in Philadelphia.

The 2016 Strengthening Families Philadelphia Summit also features a special screening of The Raising of America: Early Childhood and the Future of Our Nation. This powerful documentary explores inequalities in early childhood and how a strong start for all children can lead to a healthier, safer, better educated and more prosperous and equitable America. After the screening, a panel of experts on early childhood education, developmental science, stress and trauma will discuss what Philadelphia programs, policies, and communities can do to help raise healthy and happy children.

Registration is FREE. To register, go to: http://www.brownpapertickets.com/event/2539799
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REMINDERS

NEW CHILDLINE CLEARANCE RULE: MUST BE RENEWED EVERY 5 YEARS

Attention all active volunteers! Your Child Line child abuse clearance must now be renewed every 5 years. If your clearance is about to expire, you will soon be receiving a packet in the mail, including step by step instructions.

You are now able to complete the Child Line child abuse clearance online:https://www.compass.state.pa.us/CWIS/Public/Home

If you have any questions about the clearance process, please contact Cindy Blum:  cindy.blum@casaphiladelphia.org

E-LEARNING MODULES FOR IN-SERVICE TRAINING CREDIT

Interested in doing a new online training for in-service credit? Log in at: http://nc.casaforchildren.org/_elearn/login-1.asp .

If you do not have a National CASA password, please contact Volunteer Coordinator Cindy Blum at: cindy.blum@casaphiladelphia.org and she will set one up for you.

OLDER YOUTH VIDEO

For those of you working with older youth who are getting closer to the date when they could potentially age out of the dependency system, there are many issues to discuss, like exploring the ways youth can remain in care. The following brief video (5 minutes) from the Juvenile Law Center (JLC) explains Pennsylvania’s Act 91 with clear details about extending and re-entering foster care. Please view it yourself and then show it to your older youth so they can start thinking about their options:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m8lHWpPy7L8

TRAUMA-INFORMED CARE ONLINE IN-SERVICE TRAINING

Need in-service training hours?  Click here for an informative two-hour online training on trauma-informed care: http://www.dfps.state.tx.us/Training/Trauma_Informed_Care/default.asp

 

This is a free online training! When you have completed the training in its entirety, you will receive a certificate of completion.  Please print out or email the certificate to Volunteer Coordinator Cindy Blum for in-service training credit: cindy.blum@casaphiladelphia.org

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The mission of Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) of Philadelphia is to train and support community volunteers to advocate for the health, safety, stability and well-being of abused and neglected children.




Upcoming Events:


July 11, 2016
Pre-service training begins


August 3, 2016
Strengthening Families Conference



For more information about any of our events or to RSVP, please  contact Volunteer Coordinator Cindy Blum.

cindy.blum@
casaphiladelphia.org

or

267-519-5325




CASA of Philadelphia

Board of Directors



Maura McInerney, Esq.
 Education Law Center
Board President



Maureen Smith Lawrence, Esq.
Hangley, Aronchick, Segal, Pudlin & Schiller

Board

Vice President



 

José N. Reyes III, AuD, CCC-A

Children's Hospital of Philadelphia

Board Secretary




Caroline Rosch
Reinvestment Fund
Board Treasurer



Tom Bonner

PECO




Camille Fundora, Esq.
Berger & Montague, P.C.





Philip Hawkins

Kurchner-Hawkins Associates




Robert S. Hawkins, Esq.

Buchanan, Ingersoll & Rooney, PC




Eileen Horgan, Esq.

Women Against Abuse




Sharon R. Jindal

National Railroad Passenger Corporation




Shamyune Jones,   Esq.

   Pennsylvania Convention Center




Denis J. Lawler, Esq.

Archer & Greiner, P.C.



Danielle Petaja, Esq.

Saul Ewing, LLP



 

Lynanne M. Schaeffer

Gaudenzia, Inc.


 


  Alan Sharavsky

    Sharavsky      

 Communications

 



Judith Silver, PhD

Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia







CASA STAFF





Cynthia Mason, Esq.
Interim Executive Director


Trish Kinkle, MSW
Program Manager


Carole Cornelius, MSW
Senior CASA Supervisor


Carletta Chandler, BSW
CASA Supervisor


Terrill Carney, MA
EDM Supervisor


Cindy Blum, EdM
Volunteer Coordinator




We want to hear from you!



Please let us know if you have any new training suggestions or if you would like to contribute ideas, tips, or articles to our monthly newsletter.



Contact
Cynthia Mason at:

cynthia.mason@
casaphiladelphia.org.


CASA of Philadelphia
Friends Center
1501 Cherry Street
Philadelphia, PA  19102



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