Yavapai CASA for Kids Foundation Honors Founder Barbara Polk with Building Dedication

Photo: Four Generations of the Polk Family standing in front of the newly Dedicated Barbara Polk Family Visitation Center. Pictured left to right: John Polk (Grandson), Tom Polk(son), Baby Jack (Great Grandson), Gene Polk (Husband), Laura Polk (Granddaughter), and Stephen Polk (Grandson).

Last week, Yavapai CASA for Kids Foundation named their Family Visitation Center after the late Barbara Jean Polk who spent her life advocating and building programs, across the state of Arizona, to better the lives of foster and other disadvantaged youth.

“I think Barbara was an angel that God sent down to earth to walk amongst us humans and do wonderful things for children throughout the state of Arizona.” Said Dave Byers, Director of Arizona’s Administrative Office of the Courts. “She was a fantastic leader and had a huge impact for the good of all things children in Arizona.”

Barbara Polk spent her life caring for children and fighting fiercely for them. She was a foster parent, one of the first Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASAs) in Arizona, and was regionally and nationally recognized for her work. She received the National CASA Volunteer Award in 1995 and the Arizona Supreme Court Distinguished Service Award in 2003. She helped found Yavapai CASA for Kids Foundation, the Foster Care Review Board, the Arizona CASA program, Arizona Friends of Foster Care Foundation, Yavapai Big Brothers Big Sisters, and the National Association of Foster Care Reviewers. All these programs and organizations seek to uplift children from hard places, fight for their needs, advocate for their wants, and provide them with a consistent and loving friend.

Barbara Polk once said in an interview, “I’ve always liked children. It is very difficult to see a child who needs a friend and not be that friend. I never set out to be a child advocate, it’s just you care about kids. I want children to know they are loved by a lot of people who may not even know their names.”

It’s no wonder a building funded by community donations that provides a safe and home-like environment where foster youth can have supervised visits with their birth families, can have birthday parties and mentor meetings would be named after such an incredible woman with such a passion for children.

Yavapai CASA for Kid Foundation’s Family Visitation Center will be forever known as the Barbara Polk Family Visitation Center, in honor of Barbara Jean Polk, a woman whose mission and vision will forever live on in the state of Arizona, benefiting countless children during their darkest times.

If you want to help keep Barbara’s legacy alive and show children “they are loved by a lot of people who may not even know their names,” donate to Yavapai CASA for Kids Foundation or become a sponsor of their 2022 Gala. Visit our website or call Mona Stephens at 928 445 0800 ext. 1002 for more information.

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