MEET THE CASA VOLUNTEERS
Our goal is to ensure that every child in Hawaii who needs a volunteer Court Appointed Special Advocate has one.
My name is Tim Haugaard. I work in insurance and innovation as my profession, which is a long way from human services and the duties and responsibilities of a CASA. A good friend introduced me to the CASA program over six years ago. I’ve been a CASA since. Amphay and his team have provided the tools and support that I have needed to support great kids in tough situations.
My experience as a CASA has provided:
- the ability to directly support and advocate for children, whose needs can be overlooked
- the opportunity to demonstrate compassion and understanding for others
- the knowledge that every person can make an impact on a child’s life
- the chance to meet new people with a different perspective
- the opportunity to help kids and families navigate difficult times
- perspective on circumstances and the fortunes that I have been lucky enough to receive
- appreciate the support network I have
If I’m not a CASA, then who will be a CASA. There is no shortage of children, who need an advocate and the support CASAs bring. If you’re reading to this point, please consider joining Amphay’s team. You’ll find it rewarding in many ways.
My name is Precious Yasay. I am studying to earn my Master’s Degree in Social Work at the University of Hawai’i at Manoa. This is my last year in the program before I graduate in May 2020. Besides going to school, working part-time, going to my internship, and volunteering at CASA, I enjoy binge watching on Netflix and hanging out with my family and friends. I enjoy traveling and I hope to someday be able to visit Europe. My two years with CASA has been amazing! CASA was my very first experience in the field of working with child and families in the child welfare system. CASA has opened up my eyes to the possibilities of social work as my future career. Without the help and guidance of Amphy and my supervisor, Jesse Addison, I wouldn’t have been graduating from the Myron B. Thompson School of Social Work with my Master’s Degree.
I believe that CASA is a wonderful program that every state needs to have because we as CASA volunteers are sometimes the only stable person through the judiciary system that the child and their families see. CASA builds a close and special relationship with the children and their families by not only advocating for their best interest in court, but to ensure the safety and well being of the children. I am so honored to have the opportunity to volunteer with CASA and I look forward to continue to support the children that CASA serves. Thank you CASA and thank you CASA staff! xoxo, Precious Yasay
Hi, I am semi-retired. I practiced law on the mainland for about 36 years. I like to cook, play racquetball and pickleball, and I read fiction and non-fiction (most recently King Leopold’s Ghost, about the history of the Congo, and Blue Latitudes, about the travels of Captain Cook).
Being a CASA is about helping to save abused and neglected children. The reward, if any, comes when a case is closed to everyone’s reasonable satisfaction, and most importantly, the child/children are safe and well on the road to new adventures with love and kindness. I think that CASA volunteers will never forget the children they protect and the responsibility necessary to bring a case to a positive resolution. And by the way, none of this work could be done without the CASA social workers, lawyers, and dedicated staff, who support us as volunteers.
I am retired from lecturing at universities and working in finance. After retirement, I find joy in spending my time volunteering, traveling, playing golf and tennis. As a CASA, we not only advocate in the best interests of foster children, but also help keep the judges informed and up to date on the status of the child. The service is fulfilling because the CASA plays an integral role in helping the judges make prudent, informed decisions while developing a close relationship to the foster child. The staff of the Court Appointed Special Advocates office at the Judiciary are deciated professionals who have an in depth understanding of the issues facing foster children today and are versed at navigating the complexities of cases. They work well the volunteer CASA and play an essential role to achieving optimal outcomes to children in foster care.
Julie Anne Bacarro
Aloha everyone! My name is Julie Anne Bacarro. I have been a CASA for over 2 years and counting. I am a graduate student in the Myron B. Thompson’s School of Social Work’s Master’s program. I am an aspiring Licensed Clinical Social Work. The populations I have worked with are youth, adolescents, and adults. I worked with youth and adolescents who experienced a death of a parent, parents who are separated, parents who are divorced; youth and adolescents who are in the foster care system; youth who are truant; and military service members who seek behavioral mental health care.
I am a dog mom of two chihuahua terrier mixes named Choco and Latte. I am an avid runner. For my first running event, I completed the Honolulu Marathon in December 2018. This December, I will be participating in the Start to Park 10K. I enjoy dancing Tahitian, I have been dancing (on and off) since I was 11 years old.
My fondest memory of being a CASA is going on home visits. I enjoy doing home visits because every time I see my foster kids, they seem happy to see me, they seem eager to talk to me about anything and everything, and it warms my heart when they hug me as I walk through the front door.
I am an avid volunteer in the community both at home in Mililani, O’ahu, and within the industry that serves as my full-time job. I am Vice President at one of the largest community association firms within the State of Hawaii. Born and raised in Nanakuli Homestead, during my formative years in life, I developed a community-minded view that centered around our Hawaii keiki and volunteerism. After a few years as a childcare volunteer with Family Programs Hawaii, I was introduced to a new level of volunteerism, the CASA program. Becoming a CASA allowed me to spread my volunteer wings into another realm of serving the community.
My hobbies include spending time in a good book that includes 18th and 19th-century literary fiction is my idea of a relaxing day at home. I enjoy zip-lining, weight-training, and most of all, spending time with family. Family dinners is bonding time, which I value most.
It is quite common for me to tell people that being a CASA is something that I am most proud of in my life. It is not a role that is to be taken lightly. Even though we are volunteers, we dedicate our time and emotional energy to each case assigned to us. I learned early on the importance of remembering my Kuleana (responsibility), and leading with Aloha (love and respect) in what I do as a CASA. Our role in an abused and neglected child(ren)’s life is significant, and includes, but is definitely not limited to, monitoring and facilitating their physical and mental health needs with various resource caregivers, doctors, physicians, therapists, and their ‘Ohana. We are also required to visit with the child(ren) at least one-time per month. This is one of my favorite aspects of being a CASA, since I take great joy in spending this time with them. I am able to work with a team of people who all have the same goal for the child, which is for the child to be safe, healthy, and happy. While I wish we did not have any children in this world who go through the experiences where abuse and neglect exist, it is a reality in which we live, and that is the reason I feel it is my duty to serve as a CASA.
Steps to Becoming a CASA Volunteer
CASA Certification Requirements
- Complete a 5 week CASA overview training & court observations
- Clear all CPS/CAN registry, criminal checks, and FBI Clearances
- Demonstrate ability to serve under the judiciary’s code of conduct with honor, compassion, and courage.
- Commitment without compromise to advocating for the best interest of a child: one year minimal or for the life of a case.
- Minimum age is 21 to serve as a CASA Volunteer
CALL US TODAY AT 808-954-8124
You can support CASA Hawaii by becoming a volunteer. You’ll help in the lives of many children. If you can’t volunteer, consider donating!