Baltimore County CASA to Swear-In 7 New Volunteers

The volunteers will be sworn-in at a ceremony in Towson on Monday.

Seven volunteers will be sworn in as at the in Towson on Monday.

trains volunteers to serve as a liaison for children with difficult home situations who are embroiled in the foster care and county court systems. 

"It's a big responsibility," said Susan Daddio, the group's executive director. "They work on behalf of one child at a time, as opposed to a larger case load."

Judith Sweren, a 50-year-old Reisterstown resident who will be participating in the ceremony, saw someone wearing a t-shirt during a walk for diabetes in October. She was diagnosed with the disease last spring.

"I am a retired courtroom clerk and I wanted to do something that I had a background in," Sweren said. "I went home and looked [CASA] up on the internet and thought it was perfect for me."

Timonium resident Christy Valeri, 56, believes that the 20 years she spent as a stay-at-home mom to four children, and later experience as a school administrative assistant, will serve her well as a CASA.

"I'm looking forward to filling the need that there is for volunteers," Valeri said.

Volunteers are expected to meet with their assigned child at least once a month, interview people in the child's life and may take the child on special outings. They then communicate their findings about the child's situation when his or her case comes before court.

Prior to swearing-in, volunteers have completed a 30-hour training course and up to three hours of court observation to prepare them for their new roles.

In addition to Sweren and Valeri, Christina Griffin of Randallstown, James Petitt of Ellicott City, Lauren Kain of Dundalk, John Kirby of Catonsville and Teresa Fernandez of Perry Hall will also be recognized at the ceremony, which starts at 4 p.m.

Editor's Note: This article has been updated since its original publication to include more specific information.

Tracy Dietrich March 14, 2012 at 03:32 PM
Great story and great cause!


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