Longtime Advocate for Foster Youth Honored At CASA for Children Annual Conference
Los Angeles, CA, June 2, 2015 — CASA of Los Angeles is proud to announce that one of its longest tenured and most dedicated volunteers, Samuel Herod, was awarded the prestigious G.F. Bettineski Child Advocate of the Year Award. The honor was bestowed on Mr. Herod at the annual National CASA Awards of Excellence luncheon – part of CASA for Children’s National Conference.
By almost any measure, Samuel Herod is called an overachieving CASA by his peers and collaborators. With more than 13 years of service to CASA of Los Angeles, he is known for his resourcefulness, extensive energy for service, and willingness to take on all situations.
Mr. Herod focuses much of his energies working to ensure older youth have the tools they need to become educated and viable adults. “It seems to me that’s where the greatest need is,” Samuel says. “Kids in the system are sheltered. All the resources around them are controlled. They aren’t even allowed to open the refrigerator. Yet, when they turn 18, they’re expected to know how to act. They don’t.”
Nowhere is Sam’s impact more evident than in education. While less than half of L.A. County’s foster youth graduate high school, and just 3% obtain a bachelor’s degree or higher, all of the 15 emancipated youth Sam has served have graduated high school, and seven have gone to college or will go this year.
“I’m honored to receive this award, and want to share this with the youths I’ve had the pleasure of seeing turn into strong, responsible adults,” said Sam Herod. “Seeing the change in these kids, in their outlook on life, in growing as a person and seeing what they can be capable of – that’s what inspires me to continue this work.”
“Sam is simply amazing,” said CASA/LA Executive Director Dilys Garcia. “He works tirelessly to improve the lives of every child he comes in contact with and the only reason it’s taken so long for him to be recognized is because he refused to be nominated for so long. It’s that selflessness that makes him so special.”
Images from the event are available upon request, and Sam Herod is also available for interview.
Pictures from the event are available upon request. Contact Brian McWilliams of Spelling Communications – firstname.lastname@example.org / 310-838-4010
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: https://www.casala.org.