2012 Annual Report
Appreciation is a two way street!
- I visit a new dentist early one morning and after the paperwork was complete, a dental assistant says, “I know your name! I was at CASA’s shelter about 10 years ago and you saved my life! May I give you a hug?” What a great way to start the day.
- While standing in line for groceries, a woman notices my name tag and says proudly, “I donate to CASA’s Thrift Store all of the time!” I float out of the store.
- A staff member reports a six year old at the shelter makes her day when he is overheard saying, “We are safe and Daddy can’t find us!” Mom elaborates that since they’ve left the abuser, the kids are happier and more animated because they are not afraid.
- A Board member reports that two friends move to a new street and the long-time neighbors preserve confidentiality and never mention the building across the street is CASA’s shelter!
It really does take a whole community to stop domestic violence. Our community actively supports survivors of domestic violence and appreciates the work we do. Our staff and Board actively support CASA and appreciate the work of the volunteers, donors, and thrift shop customers.
Nearly 600 members of our community look forward to CASA’s Peace Breakfast in December. We appreciate our volunteer leaders, Jim Albright and Craig Sher. It is the event to celebrate CASA and to show how much you care about safety and security for the families of women, children and men in our community. Led by Board member, Gaelynn Thurman, almost 200 attend the Good Night’s Sleep lunch where Audrey Mabrey courageously describes her triumph over being terribly burned by her husband.
CASA Board member, Eric Ludin, has an idea for a foundation and leads a small group of involved individuals through the tedious process of writing bylaws, articles of incorporation, and completing government paperwork for the CASA Foundation that was incorporated on January 1 of this year.
Who knew that becoming the local charity for the Women’s Half Marathon, we could raise over $10,000 and involve more than 40 runners for CASA? The leadership from Sheila King, CASA Board member, was responsible for this success!
Jean Krause, another CASA Board member, speaks passionately about CASA for an event that raises $13,000 to honor the short life of a Cody’s employee whose life was snuffed out by her abusive boyfriend.
The Housing Committee, led by Amy Cuykendall, holds lively meetings with volunteers to plan the details for a new 100-bed shelter for CASA to address the reality that we turned away nearly 700 women plus children last year who called for shelter when we were full. Should we rehabilitate an existing building or buy land and build new? Where should we locate the new shelter? What will the operating costs be for a larger shelter?
The Emergency Response Team (ERT), collaboration with four organizations to divert abused children from foster care, ended this year due to funder changes and a new partnership emerged led by Directions for Living. CASA was invited again to provide a domestic violence expert to join the team making hard decisions on placement for children.
CASA Collection Thrift Shoppe holds a special sale during Domestic Violence Awareness Month in appreciation of staff of organizations that partner with us to help survivors of domestic violence and their children. Board member, Nick McDevitt, is re-energizing our volunteer Thrift Shoppe Committee along with the star volunteers who come every day to sort clothing and greet customers and helped us increase our profit over last year.
Other organizations partner with CASA like R’Club, Gulf Coast Legal Services, Community Law, Directions for Living, Operation PAR, and The Haven of RCS, to name a few, more parts of the whole community to end Domestic Violence.
We appreciate our volunteers and donors who complete our CASA community. They complete our circle that supports, protects and embraces survivors and their children. Together we raise our voices against domestic violence so that home is a safe place. Our children depend on this!
Trudy Howell, President Linda A. Osmundson, Executive Director