After a successful men’s recruitment event earlier in 2023, CASA of Kent County staff realized an important truth: nothing helps break the ice like a slice of pizza!
CASA of Kent County held its annual Heart of CASA dinner on October 19, 2023. Familiar faces and new friends gathered at The High Five GR, an exciting new venue, to honor award recipients and garner support for CASA’s mission for the coming year. Delicious food and twinkling lights helped set the evening’s tone.
The CASA community celebrated “Rookie of the Year” Marni Vyn and “Advocate of the Year” Pat Grabenstein for their dedicated advocacy. Kay Bylenga, a long-time CASA supporter, current volunteer, and former staff and board member, was presented with the well-deserved 2023 Heart of CASA award. Kay’s acceptance of the award and her moving speech that followed brought a standing ovation.
Later that night, guests heard the story of a CASA child, Desirae*, who safely reunited with her mom thanks to support from her CASA, Nancy, and foster care caseworker, Ashley. Desirae’s story came to life through a first-person reading by friend of CASA, Adalynn McAvoy, and a moving interview with Nancy and Ashley themselves.
The CASA community proved we are indeed stronger together through generous gifts of time and money. We are so thankful to everyone who contributed to a wonderful Heart of CASA event this year!
Total attendees 240
Guests interested in becoming CASA Volunteers 25
New monthly donors 9
Total Raised $58,286
Thank you, sponsors!
Tom and Kay Bylenga
West Michigan Community Bank
Andy Rent and Susie Gordon
The Boutelier Family
Creston Industrial Sales
Neil Siebert with First Community Mortgage
Patrick and Katherine Mullen
Success Realty West Michigan
The High Five GR
Save the Date – CASA Luncheon 2024
Thursday, April 25, 2024
11:30am – 1:00pm
Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park
Thank you to our event photographers, Deborah Hoag and Micah Hill (photo backdrop)!
This story was featured in the Winter 2023 edition of CASA Connect, CASA of Kent County’s quarterly newsletter. Click here to view a pdf version of this newsletter.
AS THE YEAR DRAWS TO A CLOSE, we reflect on the incredible journey we’ve embarked on together in 2023. Let’s revisit the highlights of each month!...
For 35 years, local accounting firm EHTC has devoted its annual golf outing, Chipping for Chairty, to raising money for community organizations. Our staff and board of directors were ecstatic when CASA of Kent County selected as the company’s official charity partner for 2023.
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