WalMart Foundation Funds $25,000 for Fostering Futures in CASA Liberty/Chambers Counties
Back in 2009, the Walmart Foundation awarded National CASA a grant of over $1.6 million to develop a program to assist volunteer advocates in working more effectively with and improving overall outcomes for older youth; the Fostering Futures program was created. Fast forward to present day – Walmart Foundation is once more awarding funds to CASA, only this time it is $25,000 to CASA Liberty/Chambers Counties so they can initiate Fostering Futures in our counties.
CASA – Court Appointed Special Advocates – recruits, trains and supports court appointed volunteers, equipping them to advocate for the under-served foster child. These CASA Advocates provide insight and an objective perspective not bound by restrictions that govern a CPS caseworker or attorney. They fiercely advocate to ensure that every child finds a safe, permanent and nurturing home – with their own families when possible, or if not, in adoptive families.
Fostering Futures will help prepare children in the foster care system for their future. The youth will participate in activities and exercises to recognize their hopes and strengths, and to acknowledge their needs and difficulties. They will set short and long term goals for themselves, which Advocates have completed the Fostering Futures training have found particularly helpful in working with the youth.The youth will learn useful life skills appropriate to needs such as:to make a monthly budget, apply for rental housing, obtain health insurance, apply for higher education or vocational training, pay for this education, test to be admitted into higher education or training, schedule a medical appointment, shop for groceries, cook a meal, clean their living area, wash their clothes, get a driver’s license, find public transportation, navigate a map, apply for a job, check their credit or register to vote. These seemingly simply tasks become a nightmare when the child has been moved numerous times – it is a road map for failure.
The Walmart Foundation’s $25,000 donation to CASA of Liberty/Chambers Counties is part of Walmart’s State Giving Program; they provide grants to 501(c) organizations in each state across the nation. Walmart is committed to supporting the communities they serve; just last year Walmart gave more that 110 million in cash or in-kind donations throughout Texas.
CASA of Liberty/Chambers Counties believes if we fail to connect the foster child to an Advocate who can teach and guide them, we are simply pushing the child out into the world without skills or tools, resulting in havoc, crime and additional expense to tax payers when our justice system encounters them as broken adults. Walmart’s generous donation of $25,000 allows CASA to start a Fostering Future program tweaked to fit our specific children in foster care in Liberty/Chambers – what an amazing gift to our communities.