Hearts of Yolo Update: Karen Selby

Thursday, Sep 14, 2017

1) Can you describe a moment that stands out to you as a CASA volunteer?

"A special moment that stands out to me in my relationship with my CASA child is one that happened in a recent visit. For the two years that I have had my CASA child, we've gotten along well, but during this particular visit I experienced a definite feeling of trust and connection with him. He seemed to relax in a new and different way as if he finally knew I was there for the long haul and that I really do care for him.  He was more open in our conversation about his transition from middle to high school. It felt so good to know that he felt comfortable enough to share his feelings with me."

2) What has surprised you most about being a CASA volunteer?

"What has surprised me about being a CASA volunteer is how fulfilled I feel in our relationship. It is rewarding to know that you are fulfilling the purpose for which you were “wired-up.” Initially I had a dual purpose in volunteering to be a CASA. One was to fill up the day (after being widowed) with activities, and the other was that I have always wanted to work in some way with underprivileged children. I had no idea the extent to which it would prove to be such an enjoyable experience."

3) What has been the hardest part of being a CASA volunteer?

"The hardest part of being a CASA volunteer has been wanting to bring my CASA child into a relationship/connection with my family and friends. There have been so many activities I wanted him to join in and be a part of. I have come to realize that even without those connections and experiences, he is doing very well socially. That has been, to some extent, an area of difficulty for him that he seems to be growing and maturing in."

4) What are your next steps as a CASA volunteer?

"My CASA child will probably be adopted by his extended family caregiver soon so I am trying to help him as he makes that transition. We also plan to stay in touch and get together on occasion when he is adopted."

5) If you had to sum up being a CASA volunteer in one sentence, what would  you say?

"Being a CASA volunteer has been one of the most challenging yet delightful experiences I have ever had, but then I think we all realize that the things that are most difficult are often the most rewarding."


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