Cathy Stamps has put her career in schools to good use advocating for abused and neglected children in the Pikes Peak region.
Born in a small town in Ohio, Cathy has spent much of her adult life in Colorado Springs as a dedicated spouse, mother and educator in our community.
Cathy spent 37 years working in public education—beginning by working for Harrison School District 2 as a secretary before earning her teaching certificate and serving as a fifth-grade teacher for many years. Over the course of her career, she found her passion in connecting with youth and their families. Being in the classroom also exposed her to many stories of struggle amongst her students, and she developed a special empathy for children in the system or at risk of entering the system.
Upon her retirement, Cathy looked for ways to continue staying involved with children facing challenges which led her to CASA.
“When I joined CASA, I was assigned a case where the kids were split between two foster homes as their parents struggled with addiction,” she said. “I immediately had a deep care for the children, which made navigating the complexities of the case so worth it. Figuring out the dynamics of the different agencies, the foster families, the parents and the courts is challenging, but I was glad to do it for the kids.”
Over the course of the case, Cathy learned how to navigate communicating with different entities and individuals involved.
“As the seventh of nine children, family is vitally important to me. I hold a deep belief that children should be with their families whenever possible, which makes staying objective as a CASA so difficult. But drawing on my experience working with parents and their kids in the classroom, I was able to be the voice that the children needed in their situation. I have a lot of appreciation for the support of the CASA training and staff, as well as the lawyers and judges that hold the CASA program in high regard and really listened to my perspective.”
The work is never easy, but over the course of the case, Cathy experienced a few distinct bright spots.
“There is one joyful moment that comes to mind, when both of the foster families gathered in the park with the familial grandmother, the kids and a sibling not involved in the case. Seeing them all play and spend time together was really uplifting and gave me hope for their future.”
Moments like these make the sacrifice of time and emotion that our CASA volunteers give so rewarding. Thank you, Cathy, for all of your efforts for the youth!