Diversity and Community Engagement

The University of Mississippi

Community Chat – Erin Smith

“One child in state custody or foster care is too many.” -Erin Smith

Erin Smith with CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocates) of Lafayette County joins us for this week’s Community Chat to discuss the mission, needs, challenges, and rewards of advocating for abused and neglected children in Lafayette County. This episode includes information about CASA’s upcoming events and ways you can get involved and help.

Erin, a native of Jackson and University of Mississippi alumna, is the founder and executive director of CASA of Lafayette County. In 2017, Erin decided to start a CASA program in Lafayette County after volunteering in Shelby County, TN and seeing a need for the same program back home. “What I enjoy most is giving back to my community,” Erin says on why she started the program 3 years ago.

CASA is a national nonprofit organization that advocates for the best interest of every child that has been abused or neglected and as a result have been taken into child protective custody. They are dedicated to breaking the cycle of abuse through volunteer advocacy within the court system. CASA is a national nonprofit organization with over 900 programs across the country but only 8 of which are in Mississippi. In this episode, Erin discusses her goals to raise that number and expand CASA of Lafayette County into a regional organization, reaching into 3 other counties in 10 years.

“If you have a passion for children or helping others, this is an organization you want to be a part of.”

You can visit CASA’s website here or contact them lafayettecountycasa@gmail.com or (662)832-4747.

Register for their upcoming Superhero 5K and Kids Fun Run here.

 

Watch Erin Smith’s Community Chat (YouTube)

Listen to Erin Smith’s Community Chat (Anchor)