When Lauren was 10, her parents dropped her off at her grandma’s house…and they never came back. Due to health issues, Lauren’s grandmother was unable to care for her long-term. Not knowing where Lauren’s parents were and with no other family support, her grandmother’s only option was to turn Lauren over to Child Protective Services.
Iona, a CASA volunteer, was assigned to Lauren’s case.
Lauren literally had no one, no relatives or family friends, who could help her. She was placed with a foster family; they were kind to her, but they were strangers.
CASA Advocates are expected to visit each child they serve at least once a month. Iona knew she was the only stable presence in Lauren’s life, so she went above and beyond to make multiple visits to see Lauren, sometimes weekly, letting Lauren know she wasn’t in this situation alone.
“What I Want in a Family”
After her parents’ rights were terminated, Lauren thoughtfully prepared a list especially for Iona entitled, ”What I Want in a Family”. Iona proactively began searching in earnest for a family
able to adopt Lauren.
Iona attended an adoption fair with the hope that she might meet a family that would be “just right” for Lauren. Remarkably, Iona came in contact with a family that checked off almost every
single item on Lauren’s list. Iona worked through the appropriate channels and with CPS to schedule a meeting between Lauren and this potential “wish list” family.
Instant Connection, Safe and Loving Home
The connection was instant. Over the coming months, Lauren was placed with the family, much to everyone’s delight. Because of Iona’s efforts to find Lauren a “forever family”, Lauren was ultimately
adopted by her parents, and is now a happy and healthy 8th grader, growing and thriving, safe and loved.