CASA - Court Appointed Special Advocates
Ms. Nordstrand has been a Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA) for over five years.
The Court Appointed Special Advocates Program provides stability, safety, and support for children in need in Santa Barbara County by assigning each child a volunteer to advocate for them both in court and in all other aspects of their life. Its goal is to "prevent abused, neglected, and abandoned children from becoming lost in the Juvenile Dependency system and working to find them, safe, permanent homes as soon as possible."
CASA Volunteers undergo extensive training before being assigned to advocate for an abused or neglected child both in and out of the courtroom. Advocates meet with the child weekly, write a report to the juvenile court judge for each hearing concerning the child, attend all court hearings regarding the child, and strive to serve any unmet needs of the child. Volunteers work with the child for the duration of the case or until the child is placed in a safe and protective home.
CASA volunteers are highly respected within the Juvenile Court system and among social workers, teachers, and therapists for their dedication to each child.
For more information on the CASA program and how you can become involved, go to: www.sbcasa.org
Children's Waiting Room
Renee Nordstrand initiated the idea of a Children's Waiting Room in the Santa Barbara and Santa Maria courthouses and worked through Santa Barbara Women Lawyers to secure funding for those facilities. The Children's Waiting Rooms are available to children of families having business in the courthouse such as custody hearings, trials, witness duties, self-help services, etc. The Children's Waiting Rooms are free of charge to all users.
The Law Office of Renee J. Nordstrand Scholarship is offering two $1,000 scholarship to all 10 th, 11 th and 12 th grade students in the Santa Barbara and Los Angeles area schools. To enter the student must submit a 400-500 word essay on "Skills I've Learned to Avoid Being Injured in a Car Accident". Submit all entries in Microsoft Word to firstname.lastname@example.org. The entries will be judged by Ms. Nordstrand's office. The contest runs from September 1, 2009 through November 25, 2009. All essays will be posted on our websites. Winners will be announced via the website on January 30, 2010.