According to Stacey Ryan, CASA’s development director, 22 adult teams and four high-school teams have applied and competition will begin Saturday, Nov. 2, at 9 a.m. at the school.
“This year we have great team participation,” Ryan said Tuesday.
Ryan said the tournament is not just spirited competition for a good cause, but will be an important economic driver for Montrose as a wide variety of actives are planned for Friday, including the arrival of CASA Volunteer, award-winning television journalist, and Mrs. International 2013 Amy Gregorio.
Gregorio is visiting the area to attend the CASA 2013 Dodgeball Tournament and to continue to promote her platform of raising awareness about child abuse and neglect through CASA; she serves as a member of its speakers’ bureau and as a national ambassador.
CASA works to break the cycle of child abuse and neglect, and advocates for safe, permanent, nurturing homes for our children, utilizing highly trained and dedicated volunteers.
By expanding the dodgeball tournament this year, CASA hopes to grow its presence throughout the six-county area.
“Dodgeball tournaments are fun, exciting events,” Ryan said. “The idea is for the community to come together for CASA and have a good time. CASA does profound work for abused and neglected kids and we need and want our communities to understand what we do, why it matters, believe in it, and help us do more of it.”
CASA volunteers are assigned by judges to cases within the dependency and neglect (D&N) system. D and N cases are civil proceedings that aim to find permanency for the child or children involved.
Ryan said being a CASA volunteer is the only way private citizens can become appointed members of the court.
“CASA advocates do what is just, what should be demanded, for these children,” she explained.
Accredited through the National CASA Association and members of CASA in Colorado, the local nonprofit has, since 2011, provided over $220,000 in free casework to the overloaded child welfare systems, saving an estimated $1 million in foster care costs in the six-county service area.
“Investing in these children now will help stop them from perpetuating the cycle on future generations, and strengthen the social fabric of our community one child at a time,” Ryan said.
CASA still needs community backing and financial support to accomplish its mission. “It’s important for us to consider proactively how we can support our communities and local businesses in the process of achieving our own mission. The dodgeball tournament takes aim at that goal. We’re hoping the communities in the 7th come together to embrace the lightheartedness that is dodgeball and the seriousness that is CASA,” Ryan said.
Ryan said with the event expanding into two days it is more of a community affair and a regional economic driver.
“Hopefully, it’ll entice people to take part in the Friday night events, stay overnight, and make another day of it in Montrose for the tournament,” she said.
CASA Friday Schedule
Friday, Nov. 1
• 2-2:30 p.m.: Mrs. International unveils the “CASA-Wrapped” Skid Loader at Black Dog Equipment located at 300 Denny Ct.
•4-4:45p.m.: Meet and Greet CASA Volunteer and Mrs. International 2013 Amy Gregorio for media, elected officials, municipalities, law enforcement, and CASA supporters at Montrose County Administrative Offices, 317 S 2nd St.
• 5p.m.: 5k Fun Run for CASA sponsored by the San Juan Mountain Runners starting at Montrose Rec District/Aquatic Center, 25 Colorado Ave.
• 5:30-7p.m.: Meet and Greet CASA Volunteer and Mrs. International 2013 Amy Gregorio at the Downtown Development Authority’s First Friday Stroll & Holiday Open House at A&Y Design Gallery, 315 E Main St.
• 7:30 and 8p.m.: Screenings of the movie Dodgeball, 7:30 p.m. at Holiday Inn Express, 8 p.m. at Horsefly Brewing Company, 846 E Main St.
RSVP to the Friday 4 p.m. Meet-and-Greet event contact Montrose County Media Relations Manager Katie Yergensen at 970/252-4505.