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07.22.2015

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Advocate Impact:  Nikki Orsak

Advocate Nikki Orsak is a classic example of how one person can be the difference in a child’s life.  Nikki’s story and accompanying photographs will be featured in our upcoming Gallery of Hope on October 29th. 

Nikki Orsak was sworn in as a CASA Volunteer on August 1st, 2014 and met Jovani and Robert, ages 6 and 5, shortly after. Child Protective Services took custody of Jovani and Robert due to severe neglect as a result of parental drug use.  Nikki began to develop trusting relationships with the parents, grandparents and children. The family saw how Nikki was focused on the children’s best interest and quickly began to trust and rely on her. 

She fought for the children to get their immunizations updated and helped them obtain much needed glasses.  Nikki noticed that Robert appeared to have a speech delay.  When she reviewed his educational records, she noted that his past teachers had recommended a speech evaluation.  Nikki brought this to the attention of the court and a speech evaluation was ordered. This resulted in much needed speech therapy for Robert. Nikki also began reading to Robert and encouraging his caregivers to do so as well. All of these efforts resulted in a significant improvement in Robert’s speech.

Nikki encouraged both parents to address their drug habit and to use the resources made available to them by CPS.  However, as Nikki observed the mother’s visits with her children, she began to suspect that the mother was under the influence of drugs.  Due to Nikki’s advocacy, the mother was drug-tested and the children’s safety ensured. The father took Nikki’s advice to heart and got a job and kicked his drug habit to provide a safe and permanent home for his children.  After seeing the father’s life changes, his commitment and bond with his children, and ensuring his clean drug tests, Nikki advocated for his children to be returned to him. 

Nikki was there for Robert and Jovani and she made a difference in their lives.   

We invite you to learn more about our Advocate stories by attending our Gallery of Hope on October 29th.  Sponsorship and tickets available at our Gallery of Hope event page.