Citizen of the Week: Brittany Valley 'has a heart to help people'

Brittany Valley has been a volunteer Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA) for less than a year, but she "has already made a huge difference" in the lives of a couple of children, according to Sophia Golliher, the CASA volunteer supervisor for the Family Support Council.

"She built a genuine and open connection with the children that she CASAed for and with the father and the mother," Golliher said. "She really put them at ease as they navigated through the foster care system."

CASAs are the advocates for children who have been taken from their families by the Georgia Division of Family and Children Services (DFACS) and placed in foster care. CASAs are the voice of those children in Juvenile Court. They interview the children, and others involved, and make recommendations to the court and DFACS about what ought to happen with the child.

Valley has been a CASA for just the one family so far, Golliher said. Valley played a key role in reuniting the children with their parents.

"She has a heart to help people," said Golliher. "She has a full-time job as a children's minister at Crosspointe Dalton. She's drawn to helping our community and to helping children."

The Family Support Council focuses on preventing child abuse and neglect in Whitfield and Murray counties. Among other services, it provides residential services and life skills coaching to teen mothers, advocacy services for abused and neglected children, support groups and other activities for grandparents raising grandchildren, and parenting classes.

For the care and compassion she has shown as a CASA, the Daily Citizen-News names Brittany Valley Citizen of the Week.

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