A Holiday Wish List for L.A. County’s Over Burdened Foster Care System


Despite this being a time of celebration for many there is actually a spike in foster children brought into the system during the holidays.

CASA/LA trains and supports volunteers from the community to serve as advocates for children in the highly-overburdened foster care system of Los Angeles County. Studies have shown that children with CASAs receive more assistance and support than children without, are more likely to be adopted, and are less likely to reenter the child welfare system.

This Holiday Season we at CASA of Los Angeles have been putting together a very special Holiday Wish List. If even one of these wishes could come true, it would impact the lives of thousands of at risk children in Los Angeles

In the season of giving, let us help those in need first.

Wish 1: 100 more volunteers to help advocate for and assist the 30,000-plus children in the Los Angeles foster care system. CASA/LA currently has 550 active volunteers.

Wish 2: Enough donations to cover the 650 children CASA/LA is currently serving, plus 500 additional in 2017. CASA is seeking $4 million to meet the needs of abused and neglected foster children in 2017.

Wish 3: An increase in public awareness of the hardships, abuse and risk all foster children in Los Angeles fight against.

Wish 4: Federal, State and local grants and contracts to subsidize one of the most vital programs in the country. CASA/LA lost its state and federal funding in the past three years due to budget cuts. These grants can cover many operating costs and enable CASA to continue to help at-risk youths.

Wish 5: That CASA/LA youths continue to receive the help they need to succeed in life and to ensure them a safe path to adulthood.

Wish 6: The number of foster children in the system to decrease rather than increase in 2017. Every year the number of foster children in Los Angeles has increased by thousands, however funding for services hasn’t kept pace.


Dan Hanley is Chief Development Officer for CASA/LA, a community-supported 501 (c) (3) non-profit organization. A CASA volunteer is a committed, highly-trained everyday citizen volunteer assigned by a judge to a foster child in L.A. County’s Juvenile Dependency Court system who advocates for the best interests of the child. CASA holds regular volunteer information sessions in communities throughout the county – for a list or more information, visit www.casala.org.

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