Crooners for CASA rocked a crowd of approximately 250 guests at The Commons in downtown Columbus, helping to raise nearly $50,000 in support of Advocates for Children in the event's fourth year. The successful showing propelled the event to meet its goal of a lifetime total of $200,000 raised.
The event, which was presented by MainSource Bank and The Republic, featured four groups who delivered karaoke-style performances and collected votes from the crowd in the form of donations. "BASSically Trebled", a group consisting of Sarah McGovern, Shannon Royer, Charity Campbell, and Stephanie McKinney, won the Grand Prize at this year's event. A second prize for Best Costume was awarded to "The Fresh Prince of SIHO," Patrick Sabo.
Crooners for CASA is held each year at the beginning of Child Abuse Prevention Month, and the funds raised by the event support work on behalf of local children who have been the victims of abuse and neglect. This work, always vital, has become a particular focus in recent years.
"Between 2012 and 2015, the annual number of abuse and neglect cases in the State of Indiana rose by 40,000," said Rick Scalf, Advocates for Children's Community Outreach Coordinator. "70 children in our state enter the child protection system every single day. Every one of these children deserves a steady adult by their side, helping to guarantee that the child's best interest is always front and center."
Advocates for Children provides this assistance through the work of volunteer Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) and staff Guardians Ad Litem (GAL). Last year, the agency served 841 children in Bartholomew, Decatur, and Jennings counties. The money raised at this event assists with the work on behalf of these children, and the 305 children remaining on the waiting list.
Advocates for Children is currently accepting application for its next training session for CASA volunteers, which is scheduled to begin in May. Individuals interested in learning more about this opportunity can sign up online, or call the office at (877) 604-9402.