In-Service Opportunities

The things you are passionate about are not random. They are your calling.
- Fabienne Fredrickson


Check out our special week long Valentine’s Advocate Tips and Tricks and in-service ideas! There are great new movies, books, and documentaries to immerse yourself in. It’s an easy way to keep up with your in-service hours and learn something new. Don’t forget to log your in-service hours in Optima under the Training Tab.

Monday, February 12th

Advocate Tips and Tricks
How to connect with your CASA kiddo without buying anything:

In-service Opportunities
I See You, I See Me - Author Cliff Greenberg (Children’s Book)

Keeping Your Cup Full: Self-Care is Essential to Trauma Informed Advocacy
Self-care is essential to providing trauma-informed advocacy. This webinar will offer strategies for dealing with daily work related stress, will increase awareness of the issue of vicarious trauma, and will provide ideas in order to gain organizational support to help sustain and support those working with survivors of trauma.

Ordinary Miracles (2005) (Movie)
Judge Kay Woodbury (Jaclyn Smith), takes a troubled teen (Lyndsy Fonseca) foster child into her home after no one else seems to want her.

Hope's Boy - Author: Andrew Bridge (Book)
Bridge's memoir of surviving his childhood in a broken child-care system where the state acts as parents for the young certainly illustrates the complexity of such government institutions. After being removed from his mother by the state, Bridge spent a brief stint in a residential program before being put into foster care. His decade-long stay with an emotionally abusive and unsupportive family left its share of marks.

Tuesday, February 13th

Advocate Inspiration
Why do we love our Advocates? Because they are F.I.E.R.C.E.!
Follow-up and follow-through on the needs of the assigned child.
Inspire other, involved in the delivery of services, inclusive in discussing what is needed.
Encourage the child, engagement of others.
Rally all involved in the child's case towards a successful outcome.
Collaborate, communicate, be compassionate.

In-service Opportunities
Be The One: In The Fight Against Human Trafficking (Training Video)
Human trafficking is a media buzz word that often conjures images of brothels in Thailand or confusion with the ongoing immigration debate. This innovative digital training tool cuts through the confusion, arms the viewer with an understanding of what human trafficking is and is not, and helps them recognize that this is a Texas problem with Texas buyers, sellers, and victims.

A Deep Dark Secret - Author: Kimberla Lawson Roby (Book)
Roby enters the life of a little girl hiding A Deep Dark Secret and gets to the troubling root of an all too prevalent societal and family issue. Both groundbreaking and ultimately hopeful, this coming-of-age story is powerful, brave, and unforgettable.

Wednesday, February 14th (Valentine’s Day!)

Advocate Inspiration
Why we love CASA:

  • Make a difference in a child’s life
  • To be the voice for a child in foster care
  • The big smiles after they get to go to a safe home
  • Because we are a team. "To go fast, go alone. To go far, go together."
  • They go above and beyond for our kiddos
  • They are Love in action in the community!

In-service Opportunities
No Matter How Loud I Shout: A Year in the Life of Juvenile Court - Author: Edward Humes (Book)
In an age when violence and crime by young people is again on the rise, No Matter How Loud I Shout offers a rare look inside the juvenile court system that deals with these children and the impact decisions made in the courts had on the rest of their lives.

White Oleander (Movie)
A teenager journeys through a series of foster homes after her mother goes to prison for committing a crime of passion.

Ask Us Who We Are (Documentary)
Ask Us Who We Are  is a documentary film focused on the challenges and extraordinary lives of youth in foster care. The film is a reflection on loss and the search for belonging and finding family. Through small and large acts of kindness these adults can change the course of children’s lives and give them a sense of place if only for a brief time. The film breaks open stereotypes and gives voice to those who are often not heard.

Thursday, February 15th

Advocate Tips and Tricks
How to show your love for being a CASA volunteer:

In-service Opportunities
Understanding Trauma-Informed Care in the Texas Child Welfare System (Online Training & Report)
This presentation includes strategies for advocating for children in courtrooms, schools and placements to meet each child’s unique needs. There is also discussion about how trauma influences a child’s ability to communicate about the case and how to appropriately respond to trauma-related behaviors.”

Communicating with Children (Webinar)
It is important to understand what children hope for, feel and think. It is equally important to help children understand who you are and what your role as a CASA volunteer is in their lives. Gain new skills and relation building strategies.”

Three Little Words: A Memoir - Author: Ashley Rhodes-Courter (Book)
The author's ability to form intelligent, open-minded conclusions about her traumatic childhood demonstrates her remarkable control and insight, and although there are plenty of wrenching moments, she succeeds not in attracting pity but in her stated intention, of drawing attention to the children who currently share the plight that she herself overcame.

Friday, February 16th

Advocate Tips and Tricks
Ways to practice self care

  • Go Outside for a walk
  • Take a much needed nap
  • Read a good book
  • Learn a new hobby
  • Listen to calming music
  • Avoid triggers
  • Take a 10 min break
  • Spend time with loved ones

In-service Opportunities
Key Elements of Resiliency for CASA Staff & Volunteers (Webinar)
Working with child abuse victims can take an emotional toll on volunteers and staff who not only see the impact of abuse and neglect on children but also struggle with the impact of a broken system on children who need to heal. Understanding and recognizing the influence of this work on our own lives is key to identifying strategic practices that can help us continue to do the work we find so worthwhile.

The Power of Giving - Author: Azim Jamal (Book)
This practical and visionary guide helps you discover that the more you give, the more you have.

The Language of Flowers: A Novel - Author: Vanessa Diffenbaugh (Book)
The story of a young girl and her experiences as she ages out of the system. Her gift for flowers affects the lives of others.

Know How (Foster care, stories written and performed by foster youth)
Know How captures the reality of life in foster care from the point of view of those living in it. It's not a documentary nor is it fiction. It’s a hybrid approach for using film to create social change. Instead of professional screenwriters and actors, these true stories are written and performed by a cast of ordinary foster care youth, and their performances are powerful, moving, and eye-opening.

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