For retired husband and wife Jeff and Lauretta Skigen, teamwork and dedication are crucial in handling one of the more complicated cases.
After transitioning their small business of 20 years to their two sons, the Vienna couple could have enjoyed their retirement by traveling more and spoiling their grandchildren. Instead, the Skigens followed their hearts and their lifelong commitment of volunteering, choosing a charity with which to volunteer.
They chose to volunteer with CASA based on their own "three important rules":
- The cause needed to be something they could do together as a team.
- Their volunteering efforts needed to be ongoing—not event based.
- The charity needed to be one focused on helping children.
CASA met their criteria, and the Skigens began training in September 2010. By November of the same year, they started working on their first case. Challenging, time consuming, and full of interviews and courtroom visits, it’s the kind of case that can put any partnership to the test.
“We have different strengths that we bring to the table, but we have different styles," said Lauretta. "We get along great, but after that first (court) report, I didn’t think we’d make it to 43 (years of marriage),” she said.
After a good laugh, Jeff added: “We spent 20 years working together in a business 24/7, but we fought more about our first CASA court report than we did in all the entire 20 years of business.”
For the Skigens, it’s all about getting it right — for the kids. “It’s important to be accurate and have all the facts, which enables the professionals to deal with each particular case in the best way possible,” said Lauretta. “We’re the only constant in our CASA case.”
For Fairfax CASA, it’s that kind of commitment and perseverance that will help transform young lives for the better. And for that, the organization is incredibly grateful.
Would you like to become a CASA volunteer? Attend the and learn more about this rewarding and challenging volunteer role.