Driving to her first CASA training class, Tiajuana Gough was so nervous she thought about turning around. As she reached Springdale, she realized that every single stoplight she passed was green. She took it as a sign that she was meant to keep going. At that first training class, Tiajuana met Christine Scott. Quickly, they decided they should partner up and work a case together. Five years later, they’re still serving side-by-side.
When volunteers choose to serve cases together, their work is strengthened by the unique experiences and perspectives that each one brings to the table. They are united by a common desire to help. Before discovering CASA, Christine had tried other volunteer opportunities, but thought, “There has to be more.” Now advocating for seven CASA kids simultaneously, Christine and Tiajuana have all the “more” they can handle.
If we’re to be completely honest, these dedicated women have gained quite a reputation around town. DHS caseworkers, school employees, and family members of their CASA kids have separately contacted our office to let us know what incredible advocates they are. No matter how hard the case, Christine and Tiajuana serve with professionalism and kindness, and most importantly, without judgment.
While some of their cases have ended happily, there is one that still sits heavily on their hearts. Christine and Tiajuana started advocating for a sibling set four years ago. Despite their best efforts, two of the children, now teenagers, remain in care. The siblings struggle, as most children who have faced such trauma do, in understanding their place in a world without parents. While these children’s futures are uncertain, two things haven’t changed: Christine and Tiajuana.
With five years of service behind them, is CASA retirement in sight for these two ladies? Not a chance! Wrapping up our interview, Christine chuckled, “The lights are all green now. No red lights for us!” That’s something we can all be thankful for.