Advocate News


04.30.2013

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Advocate Impact:  Janice Brock

Currently 18% of children in Texas’ CPS system will reenter State care within five years of their case closing. An unfortunate statistic that ten-year-old Kathy, and her two-year-old sister Alice, are all too familiar with. The girls’ case first began in 2010, due to illegal drug use by their mother and her subsequent failures to meet the needs of the children. Despite two years of dedicated work by CASA Advocate Janice Brock, the initial case was closed in January of 2012, due to the mother being unable to demonstrate to the court that she would be able to provide her children with a safe home.

The girls’ case was refiled in February of 2012, and both children were returned to their mother’s care by January of 2013. There were hopes that the mother would this time be able to fulfill her court-ordered obligations. However, when the children were once again removed due to their mother’s actions, Janice knew that a new strategy was in order. The constant instability surrounding Kathy and Alice was harmful, and their mother had repeatedly demonstrated an inability to responsibly act as a parent; Janice began to advocate for termination of parental rights. Meanwhile, at the emergency shelter where the girls had been placed, Kathy suffered her second break-down due to stress.

Fortunately, due to her years of experience on the case, Kathy trusted Janice, who was able to calm her down and help her through the difficult transition. Janice was also able to get counseling for Kathy, which helped her overcome her anxiety issues. At Janice’s suggestion, Kathy also began journaling to express her feelings and anxieties. Kathy’s self-esteem soon began to rise and, again with Janice’s help, Kathy became involved in the “Lioness Club” with City Year. Through that organization, Kathy has been able to receive tutoring services and now has set a goal of being a pediatrician.

Because of Janice’s advocacy, both girls continue to remain in a familiar placement with a relative. Janice’s persistence has helped to find the girls a safe and permanent home, and it has cleared the way for them to have a bright and successful future. They will now be able to move on with their lives without becoming another CPS statistic.