Sophia said she became a CASA Volunteer because of her passion for children. “It just hurts my heart to think of how kids have to pay the price for decisions or actions that are completely out of their control,” she said.
“I was surprised and shocked by the sheer numbers of cases involving abused and neglected children. But it’s not just a problem for these children. It’s also a problem for our society. We as a community have a responsibility to figure out how to take care of each other.
“The ProKids mission is so simple, so clear,” she said. “As an advocate for children in the child protection system, I am their voice. I bring an extra set of eyes and ears to the court and can give information about the case to help make a good decision on the well-being of the child.”
Sophia said she has shifted her view of cultural differences. “I see the poverty and what people are working against and how they are trying so hard,” she said.” You ask yourself, ‘How do they make everything work?’ I’m more compassionate, less judgmental and I look at people in a different way. I want to help them to get this right so the child can have a home.”
She remembers one particular child she worked with. “He clung to me when I had to leave a visit. It was not a good placement and he was suffering. His little 2-year-old face will stay in my mind forever. We were able to move him soon thereafter and he has been in the same home with his now-adoptive parents ever since.”
One person can make a difference, Sophia said. “And the bottom line is that we make sure children are safe.”