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Ronald and Barbara Evans: Working Together to Help Children

National CASA met Ron through our Facebook page. Ron was an early and frequent poster when we launched Facebook/CASAforChildren in October 2009.

Ron and Barb CASA volunteers
IV Judicial District CASA—Family Advocates
Boise, Idaho

As recent retirees, Ron and Barbara Evans were looking for a cause that they could volunteer for—together. A bit of research and a conversation with Idaho Family Advocates Programs Director Matt Hyde confirmed it: CASA volunteer work was for them.

Ron and Barbara are firm believers in the benefits of teamwork. In the past year, together they have advocated for nine children on two cases and shared their passion for the cause with friends, family members and others through the National CASA Facebook page. They also donate to the Boise program and to the National CASA Association.

“We believe in this cause and in what it does for children. When I was working as a US marshal, I had this theory that nothing good ever happened at the courthouse. People are getting divorced, going to jail, probating a will, suing each other. But now I go to the courthouse and I see great things happening for families,” says Ron. Barbara believes building trust with the children is imperative. Advocates provide “listening ears for them to be safe and know their needs are the priority.” This is especially important for younger children who often do not understand why they are not living with their parents. 

Programs Director Matt Hyde says that working as a husband-wife team has many benefits. Couples can share the stresses and stories that are intrinsic to CASA work, check each other’s perspectives and divide duties based on strengths and interests. They also serve as a positive role model to children who may not have seen many healthy, happy married family members. 

“For us, helping children overcome obstacles becomes a joint goal. Sometimes we come away from an interview or family visit with two completely different perceptions. But the deal is that before we ever submit any report, we must agree 100% on every word in it. This arrangement has always paid off. Eventually it all comes together into a stronger perspective that provides a joint recommendation to the judge.”   

 

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The US Department of Justice has supported CASA advocacy since 1985 through its Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention.
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