WELCOME NEW EXECUTIVE
DIRECTOR HAPPI GRILLON!
CASA Philadelphia is thrilled to announce that Happi Grillon, MSW has been named its new Executive Director. Happi has 25 years of social work experience in both the public and private sectors. She earned a Masters of Social Work degree from Temple University and is a graduate of the Bryn Mawr College Non-Profit Executive Leadership Institute. Over her 20-year tenure of serving the greater Philadelphia community, Happi has worked in a variety of settings with programs serving youth from early childhood to adolescence. Happi began her postgraduate career at Youth Service, Inc. (YSI) working with young women in group home placements. She moved on to be a supervisor and then program director at YSI, overseeing the foster care and mother baby group home programs. She later oversaw the crisis nursery, Teen Success, and truancy prevention programs. For the past two years, Happi has worked at Northeast Treatment Centers as Intervention Director with the Community Umbrella Agency (CUA 1). “Happi has years of experience working effectively and collaboratively with multiple agencies across the City to improve the lives of vulnerable children in foster care,” said Maura McInerney, Board President of CASA Philadelphia. “She has a deep commitment to CASA’s mission, strong advocacy skills and is an innovative thought leader in our City. We are extremely fortunate to have Happi leading CASA into the future.”
WELCOME EDM PROGRAM
COORDINATOR ANDREA JELIN
A warm welcome to Andrea Jelin who has started as
our new part-time EDM Program Coordinator!
Andrea has worked in the field of child welfare for over 35 years. On
the state level, she was the Administrator of the Office of Children and
Families in the Courts. In this position she developed and implemented a
statewide infrastructure known as the “Pennsylvania Roundtables for Children.” This initiative serves to improve how abuse
and neglect cases are handled throughout the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. On the local level, Andrea was the Director
of Children and Youth Services for Philadelphia Family Court. She supervised Adoptions Project START (Stop Truancy and Recommend Treatment), and
the Family Court Supervised Visitation Initiative. She worked collaboratively with the School
District of Philadelphia, the Department of Human Services and many other
agencies to effectuate meaningful partnerships and effective programming. Andrea was instrumental in bringing CASA to
Philadelphia, served on its Board of Directors and is currently volunteering as
an Educational Decision Maker (EDM). She received her Bachelor of Science
Degree from Temple University and her Master of Science Degree from Shippensburg
University. Andrea has been a friend to
CASA for a long time and we couldn’t be happier to welcome her to our staff.
HIGHLIGHTS IN ACHIEVING
H. C. Adoption
CASA is excited to announce that after almost six years in foster care, six-year-old H.C. has finally been adopted! Despite his extensive time in foster care, H.C was adopted by the first foster family he was placed with, and we couldn't be more excited for him and his new family! And congratulations to his longtime committed CASA volunteer Patty McKinley
It is often difficult to find good foster homes for medically fragile foster children. So, it's even more exciting when these children are adopted! N.S. was born with extensive medical needs and not expected to survive past infancy. However, thanks to his committed grandparents, N.S. is now four years old and finally adopted into a safe and loving home. Congratulations to CASA volunteer Patricia O'Keefe
on getting to see her long labor of love finally have a happy ending!
SUPPORT CASA PHILADELPHIA WITH
Back to School!
Time for back-to-school shopping! Think of CASA Philadelphia
when you are loading up your cart on Amazon!
Amazon Smile will donate to us each time you shop.
#StartWithaSmile at http://smile.amazon.com/ch/20-0744446 and Amazon donates.
HAPPY BIRTHDAY CASA
Happy birthday from everyone at CASA Philadelphia to our
volunteers who are celebrating birthdays this month:
CASA was recently awarded a grant from Impact100 Philadelphia to develop our Educational Decision Maker (EDM) program. An EDM volunteer is an individual who has been screened and trained by CASA Philadelphia and appointed by the court to serve as the legal “parent” for children in out-of-home care who do not have anyone to make educational decisions on their behalf. We are offering our very first “stand-alone” EDM training on September 8th and we will be offering these trainings quarterly going forward. This means that if you know someone who wants to train just to be an EDM, not a CASA volunteer, they can go to one night of training, complete the required clearances, and be eligible to become and EDM volunteer only. CASA volunteers who are interested in training to be an EDM volunteer may also attend. A background in education is preferred, but not required.
Prospective EDM volunteers who have never trained with CASA must submit their application and complete an interview with staff before being accepted into the EDM training. (If you have already completed your CASA training, you do not need to resubmit an application or be interviewed again.) Our next training will take place at the end of 2016. Stay tuned at www.casaphiladelphia.org or contact Cynthia Mason at cynthia.mason@casaphiladelphia for more information.
FALL 206 PRE-SERVICE TRAINING
We are looking forward to our Fall 2016 Pre-service Training, which begins on Monday, October 17th. If you are an active volunteer who would like to brush up on your CASA skills and knowledge, please join us either as a co-facilitator or member of the training night. Contact Cindy at email@example.com to find out how to get involved.
SAVE THE DATE
SEPTEMBER 16, 2016- SUPPORT
CASA PHILADELPHIA: ONLINE FUNDRAISER
SEPTEMBER 20, 2016- CUA
Come join CASA Program Manager Trish Kinkle for a frank
discussion on the CUAs: the good, the bad, and the frustrating! This will be a great opportunity to learn
more about the CUAs, as well as discuss some of your concerns and work together
with other CASA volunteers and supervisors to try and find solutions.
Tuesday, September 20, 2016 from 5:30-7:30 pm at the Friends
Center, 1501 Cherry Street.
Please RSVP to Cindy Blum at firstname.lastname@example.org. You
will receive 2 in-service training credit hours for attendance.
OCTOBER 20, 2016-
IN-PERSON MANDATED REPORTER TRAINING
Join us on Thursday, October 20, 2016 from 9:30 am to 12:30 pm at
the Friends Center for an in-person mandated reporter training. This year, our Exchange neighbors the Bartol
Foundation here at the Friends Center are sponsoring this valuable
training. It was a hit last time around
when CASA sponsored it, so be sure to sign up if you have never attended
before. If you have already done an
online mandated reporter training, this will be a more thorough refresher.
Please RSVP by October 6th through Bartol here .
You will receive 3 hours of in-service training credits for
attending this training.
NOVEMBER 3, 2016- IN-SERVICE TRAINING: “DEMYSTIFYING THE IEP”
Calling all CASA and EDM volunteers! Come and join Dr. Lisa Dissinger on November 3, 2016, 6-8 pm in the MLK conference room at the Friends Center (3rd Floor, 1501 Cherry Street) for a discussion of how to advocate for your child’s educational needs based off of their individualized educational plan (IEP). Dr. Dissinger will focus on the how to look at the basic components of an IEP and how they can inform "good" educational decisions and advocacy, whether you are an EDM or CASA volunteer. All attendees are encouraged to bring in questions and concerns about their individual child's IEPs.
Dr. Dissinger is a child psychologist and certified school psychologist who works in many private and public schools in the Philadelphia area. She also volunteers for CASA as an EDM volunteer and will be available this year to provide additional supervision to EDM's with children in residential placement.
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. Please continue to e-mail your jpeg headshot
photos (they MUST be in jpeg format) to Cindy Blum at: email@example.com 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.
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
If you have any questions about the clearance process, please
contact Cindy Blum: firstname.lastname@example.org
E-LEARNING MODULES FOR IN-SERVICE
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: email@example.com and she will set one up for you.
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.
September 16, 2016:
Live Online Fundraiser on YouTubeSeptember 22, 2016:
CUA Roundtable DiscussionOctober 17, 2016:
Fall 2016 Pre-service Training BeginsOctober 20, 2016:
In-person Mandated Reporter TrainingNovember 3, 2016:
Demystifying IEP's In-service Training
For more information about any of our events or to RSVP, please contact Volunteer Coordinator Cindy Blum.
CASA of Philadelphia
Board of Directors
Education Law Center
Maureen Smith Lawrence, Esq.
Aronchick, Segal, Pudlin & Schiller
José N. Reyes III, AuD, CCC-A
Hospital of Philadelphia
Conservest Capital Advisors, Inc.
& Montague, P.C.
S. Hawkins, Esq.
Buchanan, Ingersoll & Rooney, PC
Women Against Abuse
National Railroad Passenger Corporation
Shamyune Jones, Esq.
J. Lawler, Esq.
Archer & Greiner, P.C.
Joseph Nuccio, CPA
Saul Ewing, LLP
Lynanne M. Schaeffer
Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia
Happi Grillon, MSW
Cynthia Mason, Esq.
Trish Kinkle, MSW
Carole Cornelius, MSW
Senior CASA Supervisor
Carletta Chandler, BSW
Terrill Carney, MA
Andrea Jelin, MS
EDM Program Coordinator
Cindy Blum, EdM
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.
CASA of Philadelphia
1501 Cherry Street
Philadelphia, PA 19102
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