Interview by Julia Aguillon
Article by Jackie Velez

La Prensa Texas recently spoke with Child Advocates San Antonio’s (CASA) Vice President of Development, Blair Ortoman at the ribbon-cutting ceremony of the new pink playhouse, which was donated by the Kowalski family.
CASA recruits train and supervise volunteers from all walks of life in the community to work with abused and neglected children (newborns-18 years old) who are in foster care. Providing consistency to the children who have gone through a traumatic ordeal is key to helping them live as normal a life as possible.
The advocates of CASA are providing a bit of normalcy for the foster children by adding a play area in the backyard of their new headquarters for the foster children to enjoy.
“These kids have been through so much,” said Ortman.
Abuse and neglect at the hands of a family member are horrific and have lasting effects on a child. Sadly, the abuse that the children suffer is only part of the trauma, because the removal from the toxic environment can be just as traumatic for them and it’s up to CASA to see to it that the children be given the chance at a normal life. A chance to just be kids.
“Even if their home was not the best place to be, it’s still everything that they’ve known,” said Ortman.
The playhouse is just a piece of the play area that will ultimately expand within time at CASA’s back yard.
“The word “CASA” stands for court-appointed special advocates, but it also means home, said Ortman.
CASA needs assistance with its mission. If you are 21 years of age with a valid driver’s license and would like to volunteer, please go to to sign up for an information session. CASA will provide 33 hours training through Zoom.
For more information, please visit:
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