Savannah Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) held its 13th Annual Dancing with Savannah Stars on Friday, April 9, 2021 at Victory North. The fundraiser was a tremendous success and the organization raised over $128,000 to sustain programming needs and resources for children who have experienced abuse and neglect.
The 2021 participating dancers included: Amanda Meyer, Ambria Berksteiner, Averil Hull, Cori Williams, Liza De- Marco, Samantha Oughtred, Dr. Brittany Lawson and Steve Candler. The event was hosted by the hilarious co-owners of Front Porch Improv, John Brennan and Bri Halverson, who added such comedic charm to the show. The Celebrity Judges: Realtor ™ Sabriya Scott, CJ “The DJ” Jackson and Realtor™ Kelly Kommel, selected Averil Hull as the Best Dancer. Steve Candler took home two trophies as both Crowd Favorite and Top Fundraiser by raising $21,410 for Savannah CASA.
Each Savannah Star spent countless hours bringing awareness to the needs of children in foster care. At any given time, there are nearly 350 children in foster care in Chatham County and each of those children deserve to have a CASA volunteer fighting for them. CASA volunteers increase access to services, promote safety, and advocate for timeliness and permanency for children involved in juvenile court proceedings. Research has shown that children with a CASA volunteer fare much better in the child welfare system and in adulthood than those who do not have a CASA. Savannah CASA is working towards serving 100 percent of the children in foster care by the end of 2021 and this event is instrumental in making that happen.
“We are amazed at how our supporters have shown up for our children in foster care. To have this level of support from our community partners during a pandemic is humbling to say the least. Our team will now be well equipped to provide children in foster care with the resources that they need. We are so grateful for the generosity of our community,” says Kate Blair, Executive Director of Savannah CASA.
All of the funds raised remain in Chatham County and will be used to support volunteer recruitment, training, and retention. Savannah CASA also announced a new program launching in 2022. You can learn more about this initiative at: www.savannahcasa.org/visitation.