Rep. Gara Will Thank Volunteers and Outline Needed Foster Care Reforms
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
September 28, 2017
Anchorage – Representative Les Gara (D-Anchorage), an advocate for reforms to Alaska’s overburdened foster care system, will speak tomorrow at Alaska’s annual conference for volunteers who work with foster youth. Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) are volunteers from across the state who represent children in foster care cases with a goal of helping make sure they have the best chance to succeed in life.
“There is always a need for more people to help innocent youth who deserve a truly fair chance in life. CASA volunteers are heroes in a world where too many armchair political critics throw bombs from the sidelines. Unfortunately, we always need more volunteers, even in a state known for its volunteer spirit,” said Rep. Gara, a former foster youth who is one of two Alaskans to receive a national award for foster care leadership from Casey Family Programs, the largest foster care reform and advocacy group in the nation.
Rep. Gara has passed several pieces of legislation to help improve opportunity and success for foster youth. Rep. Gara has been a driving force behind the Laptops for Foster Youth Program, and he recently issued a back-to-school call for donated laptop computers to help foster youth succeed in school and maintain needed friend and family connections.
“So far, we have matched over 900 youth with computers they need to succeed,” said Rep. Gara. “However, there is too much failure in this state by bright youth who own little and face life disadvantages every day. If we care about our kids, we should act to show it.”
Rep. Gara is scheduled to speak Friday morning at the CASA Conference at the BP Energy Center in Anchorage. Opening remarks begin at 9:30 a.m.
Information about becoming a CASA volunteer is available online at www.alaskacasa.org.
For more information, please contact Rep. Les Gara at (907) 250-0106.