CASA of Los Angeles Executive Director Dilys Garcia Available For Comment On This Critical Situation During Hispanic Heritage Month
Los Angeles, CA, September 15th, 2014 — The numbers stemming from the most recent accounting of children in the California foster care system may come as a shock to those celebrating Hispanic Heritage Month. As of 2013, Hispanic children in CA foster care totaled 28,484 – more than double the number of children from any other ethnic group. And 11,239 of these children, almost 40%, live in Los Angeles County.
CASA of Los Angeles, a community-supported non-profit organization that mobilizes community volunteers to advocate on behalf of abused and neglected children in the county’s overburdened foster care system, encounters these at-risk youth on a daily basis.
“The numbers are overwhelming,” said CASA/LA Executive Director Dilys Tosteson Garcia. “As a Latina, it’s heartbreaking to see so many Hispanic children in the system – it’s an issue that has to be addressed if we’re to avert wholesale tragedy for a generation. We need to do more to help these children. And we need additional help from people who share their language and culture.”
Ms. Garcia can address:
– The growing numbers of Hispanic children in the L.A. foster care system
– Challenges that Hispanic children face in foster care
– The awareness of this issue within the Hispanic community
– Stories of Latino volunteers at CASA
– Critical need for bi-lingual volunteers
CASA of Los Angeles works with the most challenging cases in Los Angeles’ foster care system – children with prior maltreatment or contact with child welfare, cases of extreme abuse or neglect, or those where there is a great level of risk of further abuse and neglect. Through highly trained citizen volunteers, CASA brings the voice of a concerned community into the child welfare system.
Founded in 1978, CASA of Los Angeles is a community-supported 501(c)(3) non-profit organization whose mission is to mobilize community volunteers to advocate on behalf of abused and neglected children in the overburdened foster care system of Los Angeles County. CASA’s vision is of a Los Angeles where every foster child has an advocate and the opportunity to thrive. Through committed, highly trained everyday citizen volunteers, CASA brings the voice of a concerned community into the child welfare system. Studies have shown that children with CASAs receive more assistance and support than children without, and are more likely to be adopted or returned to their families and less likely to reenter the child welfare system. For more information, please visit the CASA of Los Angeles website: http://www.casala.org