Cherokee Nation Secretary of State Chuck Hoskin Jr., Child Advocates of Northeastern Oklahoma Executive Director Angela Henderson, Cherokee Nation Principal Chief Bill John Baker and Tribal Councilor Keith Austin.
TAHLEQUAH, Okla. – The Cherokee Nation donated a total of $47,000 to two area court-appointed special advocate organizations this week as part of the tribe’s annual contributions.
Together, Court Appointed Special Advocates of Cherokee Country and Child Advocates of Northeastern Oklahoma advocated in court cases for more than 300 Cherokee and non-Cherokee children during the last year.
Court-appointed special advocates serve as independent eyes and ears in court cases that often involve child neglect, abuse or custody concerns.
“The two groups have gone above and beyond for both Cherokee and non-Cherokee children this year,” said Principal Chief Bill John Baker. “It is a privilege for us to contribute to the work they do in the lives of children who need it most.”
The donation comes from the tribe’s charitable contributions budget, and it is divided among two area CASA groups each year based on the number of Cherokee children they serve.
“Without this money we could not operate. We have grants that pay for salaries and a United Way fund that pays for travel for our volunteers, but this money allows us to operate,” said Jo Prout, executive director of CASA of Cherokee Country.
For Child Advocates of Northeastern Oklahoma Executive Director Angela Henderson, the money is meeting a need and providing additional training for volunteers.
“This money goes to help as many children as we possibly can,” said Henderson. “We hope to get additional training for our volunteers, to make sure that we are culturally competent when it comes to working with the Indian Child Welfare Act.”
For more information about CASA or to volunteer, visit www.casaforchildren.org.
Cherokee Nation News Release
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