• Submitted by CASA of Lexington

Woodford County advocate chosen as Volunteer of the Month by CASA

One of Woodford County’s newest CASA volunteers has been named a Volunteer of the Month by CASA of Lexington. Debbie Schumacher is in her first year of service as a Court-Appointed Special Advocate, and she has already made a significant impact for children in the Woodford family court system. On one case to which she was assigned, it became clear a child had significant underlying medical issues. CASA volunteers are appointed by judges in order to provide an outside perspective on what children involved in family court cases need. They often identify gaps in services and recommend changes to help improve children’s lives. Debbie’s volunteer manager Jeanne Box said Debbie worked quickly to meet with medical providers, teachers, counselors and others, in order to give the judge a good sense of the child’s medical needs. “She also developed a good relationship with mom, and helped the family navigate the appropriate medical care,” Box said. “From the first home visit, Debbie also formed a bond with the child, and her positive relationship with the whole family helped this child access all the resources she needed. I believe Debbie’s quick and decisive steps in this case had a huge impact for this child.” Debbie said she is one of four or five members of St. Andrews Anglican Church who have become CASA volunteers since Box introduced them to the program. “I really like getting to know the children that I’m involved with, as well as the parents,” Debbie said. Her cases have so far not involved any extreme instances of abuse or neglect, as some CASA cases do. But Debbie said she’s been happy to discover that she can make a big difference for children regardless of their situation. “I think it just points to how CASA is involved in a whole range of different cases,” she said. “It has been really rewarding. It’s really important that the kids have someone they know who can really speak for them.”


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