Informational open houses being a child’s advocate

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With the number of Montana children in foster care more than doubling in the past decade, Lincoln County children are in need of court appointed advocates, and a local organization is hosting open houses looking for volunteers.

Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) for Kids will host two open houses this month, according to a press release from the organization.

The first will take place in Libby on Wednesday, Jan. 9 at noon in the Libby branch of the Lincoln County Public Libraries at 220 W. 6th Street.

The second open house will be in Eureka on Wednesday, Jan. 9 at 5 p.m. at Lincoln Electric, 312 Osloski Road.

The open houses are information sessions, though applications will be available at the events for those who wish to apply to be part of the program.

Training begins the week of January 21, and applications must be received by Sunday, Jan. 13.

Applications can be completed online at www.flatheadcasa.org by clicking on the link “Become An Advocate,” or a paper application can be requested by calling Program Director Sean Carlin at 406-291-8912 or emailing him at scarlin@lincolncasa.org. Application packets will be available at the scheduled Open House events.

“Every child needs a hero, but abused and neglected children need a superhero, They need a CASA.” the release states. “The number of abused and neglected children entering foster care in Lincoln County is growing. They need a voice. They need you.”

The release states that the number of Montana children in foster care grew from 1,507 in 2008 to nearly 4,000 in 2018, citing a report filed by the Protect Montana Kids Commission.

There are currently 60 children who are involved with the Montana 19th Judicial District Court in Lincoln County through no fault of their own, the release states.

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