Holmes Report 06 May 2011 // 11:00PM GMT
The National Court Appointed Special Advocates Association (CASA) is a national network of trained community volunteers who are appointed by judges to watch over and advocate for the safety and wellbeing of abused and neglected children.
Each year, according to a U.S. Department of Health and Human Services report on adoption and foster care, more than 450,000 children enter the foster care system in the United States. Today, African American children make up 35 percent of all children in foster care. Additionally, more than 50 percent of African American children in the child welfare system are boys. However, only 12 percent of CASA’s volunteers are African American.
In an effort to address these alarming statistics, CASA hired LAGRANT COMMUNICATIONS to develop a multimedia campaign designed to raise CASA’s visibility and recruit additional African American volunteers.
• Raise awareness of CASA among African Americans
• Raise awareness of the disproportionate number of black children in the foster care system among African Americans
• Recruit African American volunteers
• Secured Grammy Award-winning R&B recording artist Anthony Hamilton as CASA’s national African American spokesman.
• Developed a radio PSA and multimedia news release featuring Grammy Award-winning R&B recording artist Anthony Hamilton.
• Conducted a national media tour to promote CASA’s partnership with Anthony Hamilton.
• Developed an African American volunteer recruitment brochure for use by 1,055 CASA offices across the country.
• Conducted a faith-based roundtable discussion and media tour in Chicago with Judge Hatchett to address the plight of African American children in the foster care system. Media outlets included Ebony, Jet, Chicago Defender, N’Digo, WGRB-AM, WGCI-FM, and WMAQ-TV (NBC).
• Developed a bylined OpEd on behalf of National CASA spokeswoman Judge Glenda Hatchett that advocated for African American children in the foster care system in honor of the Martin Luther King, Jr. Day of Service.
• The CASA / Anthony Hamilton partnership media tour garnered 60 print, broadcast, and online media placements with such media outlets as AOL Blackvoices.com, Rolling Out, N’Digo, Blackamericaweb.com, and The Tom Joyner Morning Show with media impressions totaling 337,917,681.
• Secured 25 print and online media placements with such media outlets as the Philadelphia Tribune, South Florida Times, Houston Style, St. Louis American, Dallas Weekly, and the Michigan Chronicle, that garnered 8,360,055 gross media impressions as a result of the Judge Hatchett Martin Luther King, Jr. Day of Service OpEd.
• Secured six print and broadcast media placements with such media outlets as Ebony, Chicago Defender, Jet, and WGRB-AM that garnered 5,000,000 gross media impressions as a result of the Judge Hatchett Chicago media tour.
• The Judge Hatchett Chicago faith-based roundtable discussion brought key Chicago faith-based leaders and community civic leaders from organizations such as the African American Ministerial Alliance; Illinois Department of Children and Family Services; Chicago Police Department; and Chicago Public Schools to the table to discuss potential partnerships and solutions to the plight of African American children in the Chicago foster care system.