Message from Wendy Magee CASA Jefferson Executive Director
CASA Jefferson's annual fundraising GALA was held on September 19, 2023 at The Audubon Team Room it was a BIG SUCCESS!
Female Advocate of the Year Megan Fontenot O’Cain and Male Advocate of the Year Damon Ponthieux were honored.
Without our amazing CASA Jefferson Advocate volunteers, we wouldn't be able to accomplish our CASA Jefferson's mission of advocating for the best interest of Jefferson Parish abused and neglected children in foster care.
Thank you to all of our sponsors! Wendy Magee CASA Jefferson Executive Director
CASA Jefferson 2023 Gala Photos
Domestic Violence Awareness Month is designed to unify women and men all across the world who have been victims of domestic violence. It is important to recognize that domestic violence impacts millions of people, and it’s not only women who are victims; many men suffer domestic violence as well. It is a problem across every status, culture, religion, and race. There are many different forms of domestic violence as well , which is why raising awareness is so critical. Signs You Are In An Abusive Relationship A lot of people do not realize that they are in an abusive relationship. Here are some of the signs that you could be in an abusive relationship that you need to get out of…
Your partner sexually or physically abuses you. If they ever make you have sex with them when you don’t want to, hit you, shove you, or push you, this is domestic abuse.
Your partner threatens you or your family.
Your partner puts your down. They attack your capabilities, mental health, looks, or intelligence. They blame you for their violent outbursts.
Your partner is jealous. They may isolate you from your family or friends or they may accuse you of not being faithful.
Your partner is possessive. They may check up on you all of the time and they may get angry if you hang out with certain people.
Your partner has strangled you, beat you, or hit you in the past
Emotional Abuse A lot of women and men suffer from emotional abuse, and it is no less destructive. Unfortunately, emotional abuse is often overlooked or minimized, even by those experiencing this. Emotional abusers look to chip away at your feelings of independence and self-worth. You can end up feeling like you do not have anything without your abusive partner or that there is no way out of your relationship. Emotional abuse includes verbal abuse. This includes controlling behavior, intimidation, isolation, shaming, blaming, name-calling, and yelling. Abusers who use psychological or emotional abuse will often throw about threats of physical violence, as well as other repercussions if you do not do what they demand. The scars of emotional abuse run deep, and they are very real! You may assume that physical abuse is a lot worse, as people can end up with physical wounds and send you to the hospital. However, emotional abuse can be just as damaging. Sometimes, it can even be worse Financial abuse is one of the subtler forms of emotional abuse. Some examples of this include:
Taking your money or stealing from your wallet
Sabotaging your job – calling constantly or making you miss work
Preventing you from choosing your own career or working
Restricting you to an allowance
Withholding basic necessities, such as shelter, medications, clothes, and food
Making you account for every penny you spend
Withholding credit cards or money
Rigidly controlling your finances
What are the short-term effects of Domestic Violence on children? Children in homes where one parent is abused may feel fearful and anxious. They may always be on guard, wondering when the next violent event will happen. This can cause them to react in different ways, depending on their age:
Children in preschool. Young children who witness intimate partner violence may start doing things they used to do when they were younger, such as bed-wetting, thumb-sucking, increased crying, and whining. They may also develop difficulty falling or staying asleep; show signs of terror, such as stuttering or hiding; and show signs of severe separation anxiety.
School-aged children. Children in this age range may feel guilty about the abuse and blame themselves for it. Domestic violence and abuse hurts children’s self-esteem. They may not participate in school activities or get good grades, have fewer friends than others, and get into trouble more often. They also may have a lot of headaches and stomachaches.
Teens. Teens who witness abuse may act out in negative ways, such as fighting with family members or skipping school. They may also engage in risky behaviors, such as having unprotected sex and using alcohol or drugs. They may have low self-esteem and have trouble making friends. They may start fights or bully others and are more likely to get in trouble with the law. This type of behavior is more common in teen boys who are abused in childhood than in teen girls. Girls are more likely than boys to be withdrawn and to experience depression.4
You can help your children by:
Helping them feel safe. Children who witness or experience domestic violence need to feel safe. Consider whether leaving the abusive relationship might help your child feel safer. Talk to your child about the importance of healthy relationships.
Talking to them about healthy relationships. Help them learn from the abusive experience by talking about what healthy relationships are and are not. This will help them know what is healthy when they start romantic relationships of their own.
Talking to them about boundaries. Let your child know that no one has the right to touch them or make them feel uncomfortable, including family members, teachers, coaches, or other authority figures. Also, explain to your child that he or she doesn’t have the right to touch another person’s body, and if someone tells them to stop, they should do so right away.
Helping them find a reliable support system. In addition to a parent, this can be a school counselor, a therapist, or another trusted adult who can provide ongoing support. Know that school counselors are required to report domestic violence or abuse if they suspect it.
Getting them professional help. Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) is a type of talk therapy or counseling that may work best for children who have experienced violence or abuse. CBT is especially helpful for children who have anxiety or other mental health problems as a result of the trauma. During CBT, a therapist will work with your child to turn negative thoughts into more positive ones. The therapist can also help your child learn healthy ways to cope with stress.
Bullying is when a person is picked on over and over again by an individual or group with more power, either in terms of physical strength or social standing. Kids who are bullied can experience negative physical, school, and mental health issues. Kids who are bullied are more likely to experience depression and anxiety, increased feelings of sadness and loneliness, changes in sleep and eating patterns, and loss of interest in activities they used to enjoy, decreased academic achievement and they are more likely to miss, skip, or drop out of school. Here are some things you can do to combat psychological and verbal bullying. Ignore the bully and walk away. Bullies thrive on the reaction they get, and if you walk away or ignore hurtful emails or instant messages, you’re telling the bully that you just don’t care. Hold the anger. That’s exactly the response he or she is trying to get, and want to know they have control over your emotions. Don’t get physical. Not only are you showing your anger, but you also can never be sure what the bully will do in response. You are more likely to be hurt and get into trouble if you use violence against a bully. Practice confidence. Practice ways to respond to the bully verbally or through your behavior. Practice feeling good about yourself. Talk about it. It may help to talk to a guidance counselor, teacher, or friend — anyone who can give you the support you need. Talking can be a good outlet for the fears and frustrations that can build when you’re being bullied. Parents, school staff, and other adults in the community can help kids prevent bullying by talking about it, building a safe school environment, and creating a community-wide bullying prevention strategy. They can:
Help Kids Understand Bullying: Talk about what bullying is and how to stand up to it safely. Tell kids bullying is unacceptable. Make sure kids know how to get help.
Keep the Lines of Communication Open: Check in with kids often. Listen to them. Know their friends, ask about school, and understand their concerns.
Help kids take part in activities: Special activities, interests, and hobbies can boost confidence, help kids make friends, and protect them from bullying behavior.
Model How to Treat Others with Kindness and Respect
OCTOBERBIRTHDAYs CASA VOLUNTEERS
Kathy Murphy Shane Wilson Ronald White
OCTOBERANNIVERSARYs CASA VOLUNTEERS
Jacquie Bonano-3yrs Kim Tuleu-4yrs Nina Soonthornthiti-4yrs Zoe Vallotton-3yrs
6Our Mission is to break the cycle of child abuse and neglect through volunteers advocating for safe, nurturing, and permanent homes for foster children in our community.
Our Vision is to have volunteers recruited, trained, and assigned to every child in the foster care system in Jefferson Parish.
New Advocate Volunteer Pre-Service Training classes are Self-Guided & completed ON-LINE from the comfort of your home.
As of October 1, 2023, we have 46 children waiting for a volunteer to advocate for them.
Please have family/friends/coworkers call 504 533-8757 and speak to Margaret Ether to learn more about becoming a CASA Jefferson volunteer advocate.