1. What made you decide to become a CASA?
Well, I wanted to volunteer somewhere. I've always had a passion for disadvantaged youth and adults. I kept searching my heart about how to volunteer in that capacity. Then one day, I saw the television commercial about becoming a court appointed advocate on behalf of children in the foster care system. A light bulb went off! I said to myself, "That’s it! I want to do that!” I applied, interviewed, went through training, and here I am.
2. What is your professional/volunteer background?
I was in the U. S. Army and we had a little joke about volunteering. We said that if you're ever asked to volunteer, then do it because then you get to watch everyone else participate after you volunteered! It was true. So, volunteering stayed in my blood. I volunteer at work and at church. I just raise my hand instinctively even without knowing the task and it's been more favorable for me than not. For me, the blessing is in the giving back. There is something to be said about doing something for others without receiving a monetary reward! It just works.
3. What advice would you give to someone who is thinking about becoming a CASA?
I would highly recommend it. It's rewarding not so much because of what a CASA does, but more so because of the value that is placed on what you do. You give of yourself, your time, and your ability to care about someone other than yourself. I would tell them part of the reward is just in getting you off your own mind and thinking about someone else's needs.
4. What has been the most challenging part of being a CASA?
The most challenging part of being a CASA for me has been the sacrifice of my own time. I'm really selfish with my own time and I'm a strict time manager. So, being a CASA forces you to work around the schedule of others in so many, many instances. It's been a blessing as well because I didn't know I would or could sacrifice my precious selfish time and not mind doing it.
5. What has been the most rewarding part of being a CASA?
The most rewarding part of being a CASA is the blessing of not having myself on my mind. As a CASA, you're forced to allow your needs, time, and concerns to take a back seat. And once you do that, you are grateful to be able to meet someone else's needs. It's self-gratifying to meet the needs of someone so very less fortunate than myself.
6. Is there anything else you would like to add about yourself or your CASA experience?
Being a CASA is so selfless. It's amazing the character it builds and enhances in a person. No value can be placed on the work of a CASA. Or, the reward received from being one. It's been a real blessing for me. I really love it because I'm not on my mind!! Thank you for the opportunity to experience this blessing.
Casework Supervisor, April Bolden says: "Lisa Dixon has been a wonderful addition to our team of Advocates! She has been very proactive on her case and has developed rapport with all of the parties and the family. Lisa is not afraid to reach out to me if she has any questions or concerns, and is always wanting to learn more and help as much as she can. She has a very bright, engaging personality with a beautiful smile to match!"