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.
Several years ago, Kym Matthews met former CASA volunteer and current Michigan CASA employee, Janice Fonger at a networking “power lunch” hosted by WGVU radio host Shelley Irwin. For Kym, this was the introduction into a community she is now passionate about. Janice invited Kym to attend CASA of Kent County’s annual luncheon with her, and Kym was moved by CASA’s mission to advocate for abused and neglected children. She noted how impactful it was that “a judge saw that kids needed someone to be comfortable around” during their time in the child welfare system. As a mother, Kym was struck by the importance of advocacy, drawing on her personal experience of advocating for her own children. She said, “I love that it’s everyday people” advocating for children in our community.
After her first CASA luncheon, Kym wanted to contribute in any way she could. She felt that volunteering wasn’t the right fit, so she donated what she could manage and told everyone about CASA’s program. As a small-business owner and community member, Kym has established a network of friends, colleagues, and clients with whom she discusses the topics she’s passionate about – like CASA. Each year, Kym has attended the CASA luncheon and brought a friend. One year, she brought along her neighbor, who became a CASA volunteer and took a case advocating for two children. Kym continued to pursue her goal of raising awareness for CASA’s mission, saying “If I can’t donate regularly, I can bring people.”
Before the 2023 luncheon, Kym reached out to CASA of Kent County staff and graciously volunteered to host a table of her friends. She brought members of her community with her to learn about how they can be involved in supporting CASA’s mission. Kym also decided to become a monthly donor, a goal that she has been working toward. Kym expressed her gratitude for CASA’s presence in the community, saying, “I’m so glad I get to be a small part of this organization and let people know how cool it is… It’s an important mission. Kids are our future.”
Thank you, Kym, for your continued support of CASA as both a donor and an ambassador!
This article is part of the Fall 2023 edition of CASA Connect, CASA of Kent County’s quarterly newsletter. Click here to view a pdf version of this newsletter.
CASA volunteers commit time throughout the year to advocate for children, so we love to throw a proper party to express our gratitude for their hard work.
Did you know that 49% of the children CASA of Kent County serves are boys, but only 14% of volunteers are men? Having a positive male role model can make a big difference in the lives of boys in foster care — especially since most child welfare staff are women. CASA wants to close the gender gap in volunteer representation.
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