Sisters Paige and Sara were removed from the care of their mom and dad when they were four years old due to ongoing drug use by both parents. The girls’ dad was the primary caregiver for them as their mom would often leave the girls alone for long periods of time or take them with her into houses where drugs were being used and sold.
Paige and Sara were placed with their great-grandma while Child and Family Services started to work with the two parents to address their substance abuse and domestic disputes. Soon after the girls entered foster care, a judge appointed a volunteer Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA) to the case. The Advocate, who had just completed CASA Pre-Service training, started to visit the girls regularly. The CASA fondly stated the girls loved to play outside in the sandbox at their great-grandma’s house, and that the girls loved to spend time together and had a close relationship to one another. The CASA became a steady presense for the girls and their great-grandma, visiting them regularly and building a relationship with them. She was a support to the great-grandma as she got used to taking care of two littler girls. Paige and Sara loved to do school flashcards with their CASA to learn their numbers and letters when she came to visit them.
The girls’ dad started to work through his treatment plan with Child and Family Services to address his substance use and anger management. He was able to visit the girls frequently under the supervision of their great-grandma, and he stayed in steady contact with the CASA to keep her updated on his progress. His relationship with the girls was positive and they were always excited when he came to visit them. Meanwhile, the girls’ mom continued to struggle with her substance use and didn’t stay engaged in the case or maintain a relationship with the girls.
Paige and Sara celebrated their fifth birthday and started kindergarten this year. They are living part time with their dad and slowly making the transition back to his full time custody and care. The CASA has been a great resource for both the great-grandma and the dad on the case and they rely on her insight as they work together for the two girls. Since coming into foster care, Paige and Sara have been in a stable environment which has given them the chance to learn, play, and just be kids. The CASA will continue to be a great support for everyone involved, and advocate for the best interests of the two girls until they achieve permanency.