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Advocate Impact - Kornsiri “Cherry” Piluek

Cherry has been with CASA for over a year. She began her journey as a CASA volunteer in August 2015. Having come from a diverse background in Thailand she understood the importance of family and culture.  Upon taking her first CASA case Cherry was excited and nervous.  She partnered with Anna Flores, CASA Peer Coordinator, in the selection of her case.  Although all the cases tugged at her heart, she selected one and her role as an Advocate began. 

Little Steve was brought into care due to his mother’s drug habits and her inability to care for him. Cherry knew he needed someone to be his voice through this troublesome time in his life.

Cherry and her peer coordinator met with Steve and his CPS caseworker. Shortly thereafter, the caseworker mentioned that the maternal grandfather was interested in being placement for Steve, but there were concerns. Maternal grandfather shared that it had been so long since he had raised children; he was hesitant and not sure he had the skills to care for Steve. He really wanted to have a parenting class refresher and reached out to Cherry to see if she could help him locate one in Spanish.  Cherry, whose focus was centered on what was best for Steve, and the importance of placement with family to strengthen the family bond, wanted to help the maternal grandfather seek the services necessary.  She provided him the contact information for community resources which were available to him in his immediate community.  He was able to enroll in a Spanish speaking parenting class and also participated in a support group for grandparents raising grandchildren! 

This small gesture on Cherry’s behalf was instrumental in making sure little Steve remained with family and that his grandfather felt comfortable enough and had the tools necessary to make this a permanent placement. Cherry and her peer coordinator continued to advocate for services for Steve and made sure he had an Early Childhood Intervention evaluation and that he received all services in a timely manner.   She worked diligently and recommended that play therapy be conducted in Spanish and be in the home.

Without Cherry, her peer coordinator, and the wonderful dedication they both had to little Steve, this journey would have been extremely difficult to navigate for this family. It was because of her hard work and the faith she had that she was able to make sure Steve had a forever family.  CASA is grateful for Cherry and her commitment to her case. We are truly blessed to have her as an Advocate! 

Advocate Impact - Kornsiri “Cherry” Piluek