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CASA volunteer sworn in
Fran Lewis-Timmons is sworn in as a CASA volunteer by Judge Linny Darden. - photo by Photo provided.
Last week, Fran Lewis-Timmons was sworn in at the Liberty County Courthouse by Judge Linny Darden as a volunteer with Court Appointed Special Advocate for children.  
Lewis-Timmons completed CASA’s 30-hour training course and said she is excited about her new responsibility. The volunteer said she was inspired to get involved when she heard an excerpt from a speech by former South African President Nelson Mandela: “Safety and security don’t just happen, they are the result of collective consensus and public investment. We owe our children, the most valuable citizens in our society, a life free of violence and fear.”    
CASA was formed in 1976 by Superior Court Judge David Soukop of Seattle. CASA volunteers are appointed by judges to watch over and advocate for abused and neglected children, to make sure they don’t get lost in the overburdened legal and social service systems or languish in an inappropriate group or foster home. Federal law requires that a guardian ad litem be appointed in all cases of child abuse and neglect. Georgia law outlines the responsibilities and limitations of CASA volunteers.
In 1999, the Atlantic Area CASA program began in Liberty County. To become a volunteer in Liberty, Bryan, Long or McIntosh counties, a participant must complete at least 30 hours of training. CASA volunteers advocate for children in court cases that involve child abuse or neglect. CASA is a nonprofit and does not represent the legal system, the Department of Family and Children Services or the parents involved in the case.
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