Franklin Co. CASA Seeking Volunteers For Advocate Program
By Kelly Bulmer, New CASA Volunteer Recruiter/Trainer
Franklin County CASA is pleased to announce Kelly Bulmer is the new CASA Volunteer Recruiter. Photo courtesy Franklin County CASA.
Franklin County CASA director Aimee Reese is pleased to announce the hiring of Kelly Bulmer as the new Volunteer Recruiter/Trainer for the Franklin County Court Appointed Special Advocate program. CASA volunteers assist the most vulnerable population in our community; children in the child welfare system.
Bulmer is a graduate of Ball State University with a BS in Public Relations. She has a working knowledge of the child welfare system from previous employment at the Indiana Department of Child Services (DCS). Bulmer grew up in Franklin County and graduated from FCHS. She and her husband Rob have three children. In addition to being the CASA recruiter/trainer she is also the Executive Director of the United Way of Franklin County.
“I am excited to have her on board,” states Reese. “She knows the system so there is no learning curve. We currently have 6 trained CASA volunteers; my hope is to double that by the end of the year.”
There are currently 44 CASA cases and 77 children in those cases. The numbers have risen dramatically since the inception of the Franklin County CASA program in 2014. Ideally each CASA would only have one or two cases but with Franklin County’s numbers, Reese follows all the cases the 6 trained CASA’s cannot cover. In 2016, Franklin County CASA provided advocacy for a total of 122 children.
CASA volunteers are advocates for the children in the child welfare system. They speak for the best interests of those children. CASA volunteers play a vital role for the success of children in the child welfare system. Studies note that children with a CASA spend less time in foster care, are less likely to re-enter foster care and have better overall outcomes than those that do not have a CASA.
The Franklin County CASA program is a court-funded program and was started in 2014 under the direction of Judge Steven Cox.
There is a need for additional CASA volunteers in Franklin County. All CASA volunteers are ordinary people from all professions, cultures and educational backgrounds that are committed to doing what is best for a child. Speak up for a child and volunteer!
CASA volunteers must be 21 years of age, have a minimum of a high school diploma or GED equivalent, successfully pass all criminal and child welfare background checks, provide personal and professional references and complete 30 hours of pre-service training and court observation before being assigned a case.
An open house for those interested in the CASA program will be held on Tuesday, April 25 from 5:00 to 7:00 pm and again on Tuesday, May 2 from 1:00 to 5:00 pm at 483 Main St. Brookville in the courthouse annex building.
For more information on the Franklin County CASA program or to become a volunteer contact Bulmer at 765-547-1493 or 765-309-8326 or email [email protected].