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Rosa Hernandez: Showing Children a Better Way

CASA of Central Texas
Malaya, 3 years old

Rosa and MalayaRosa Hernandez goes the extra mile to help children.

As a CASA volunteer in rural Lockhart, TX, it is not unusual for Rosa to regularly drive 300 miles to visit a family or talk with a teen. As a teacher and a parent, she regularly sees children make bad choices based on what they perceive are their limited options. What keeps Rosa on the road is her desire to ensure children are in safe situations where they can make positive choices.

Rosa was serving as a CASA volunteer on a case involving seven children who had been removed from their home in Lockhart. When one of the girls became pregnant, Rosa was assigned to the case of the unborn child. Rosa attended the birth of the child, Malaya, in 2005, and subsequently worked with the teen mother and her boyfriend in an effort to keep the young family together. She also contacted relatives to investigate alternate placements should that become necessary.

Whatever I can do—that baby needs a good home.

One of the relatives she contacted was Malaya’s aunt, Lucy Armstrong, who was living in Washington, DC, at the time. When Lucy learned that Malaya had been placed in foster care, she immediately stepped forward and offered to adopt her. Rosa worked with CPS providers in Texas and DC as they conducted interviews, home assessments and background checks. Rosa could see Lucy’s strength and commitment to giving Malaya a good home.

When the time came for Lucy to take temporary custody of Malaya in May 2007, Rosa flew to Washington, DC, with the baby and her caseworker so that Malaya would be with someone familiar.

She is one of the truly lucky, blessed ones.

Last year, Lucy and Malaya returned to Texas to facilitate the adoption, which was finalized in December. “I’m doing everything in my power,” Lucy said, “to give my baby the best life possible. She’s in good hands now.”

 

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