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Michalene Reilly – December 2018 Featured Volunteer
- How long have you been a CASA?
I finished my training in the summer of 2017, so I have been active for just over one year.
- What brought you to apply to become a CASA?
As a person who was brought up in a home with two alcoholic parents, the idea of helping children in these types of situations was important to me. I did not have an advocate in my childhood and every kid who gets one has the opportunity to know there is someone who is looking out for their best interests independent of the interests of anyone else in the situation.
- Besides being a CASA volunteer, what do you like to do in your spare time?
I am retired after almost 30 years at a job I loved working for Hoosier Energy. It was a fast paced environment so spare time is not my favorite. I am on two non-profit boards and participate in many of their committees. But that is my spare-spare time. What I really do and love to do is help my family. I get my great-grandson off to school in the morning and meet the bus in the afternoon and I pick up my granddaughter from South every day and take her home. I have wonderful children, grandchildren and great grandchildren that I love to spend time with. I also have a group of women who I mentor and meet with them at all kinds of odd hours. I am blessed to be busy and fulfilled.
- What do you love the most about being a CASA?
My favorite word in the world is HOPE. CASA is about hope. First of all the hope of children being protected. Secondly the hope that with intervention and services families can be reunited into a strong cohesive unit. And finally, if reunifications cannot happen, the hope that children find places where they are loved and where they belong. CASA means HOPE.
- And now for a little fun, what’s a hidden talent or unusual fact that most people don’t know about you?
Although I am too busy to keep up with it, I love to scrapbook. I love to turn a vacation into a story I can re-live over and over again.