CASA looking for a few good men

Updated 4/14/2013 5:04 PM

Last month, Batavia resident Bob Runke spoke of how rewarding it is to help abused and neglected children by volunteering at CASA Kane County.

"These young people need to trust somebody," he said.

Runke is a court appointed special advocate, and officials at CASA Kane County are looking for more men like him to volunteer. Only 20 percent of CASA's 264 volunteers are men, but half of the agency's yearly caseload of about 550 children is boys.

The organization will host three recruitment sessions this month called "Looking for a Few Good Men," the first one set for 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. Monday at the Elgin Public House, 219 E. Chicago St., Elgin.

Other meetings will be held from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. on April 22 at McNally's Irish Pub, 109 W. Main St., St. Charles, and April 29 at Two Brothers Roundhouse, 205 N. Broadway, Aurora.

To RSVP, email Deb McQuaid at or call (630) 444-3110. CASA volunteers must complete 40 hours of training before being sworn in by the juvenile court judge. CASA Kane County provides all the training.

CASA Kane County also will be host a "Guest Bartender Night" fundraiser from 6 to 9 p.m. April 29 at McNally's Irish Pub. The guest bartenders for the evening will be St. Charles Mayor Don DeWitte and Kevin O'Donnell from O'Donnell Commercial Real Estate.

The night also will include a 50/50 raffle and other prizes including a three-month membership to the Delnor Health & Wellness Center, a $160 gift card to Geneva Running Outfitters, a gift basket from McNally's and more.

Raffle tickets are $5 each or 6 for $20. Proceeds from will benefit CASA Kane County and also will highlight Child Abuse Prevention and Awareness Month, which is each April.

Aurora names top 911 operator: A seven-year veteran emergency telecommunications operator will be honored Tuesday as Aurora's Telecommunications Operator of the Year.

Rosa Bocanegra, who started her career in Aurora in September 2005, will be honored at a ceremony at Aurora Police Headquarters, 1200 E. Indian Trail, after being chosen by her co-workers for the award.

The honor dovetails with National Telecommunicator Week, which is sponsored by the Association of Public Safety Communications Officials International to honor the thousands of men and women who respond to emergency calls, dispatch emergency professionals and equipment, and give lifesaving help.

"Rosa is not only a first-rate professional, but she is a team player who always delivers exemplary customer service to the citizens we serve," said Aurora Police Chief Greg Thomas. "911 operators are under an immense amount of stress because they are the first line in getting emergency help to people who are in crisis. Rosa is truly deserving of this honor."

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