Downtown Pinwheel Display Reminds Arlington Residents of the Need for Child Welfare Advocates
By Office of Communication
Posted on April 25, 2022, April 25, 2022

CASA of Tarrant County pinwheel display in Downtown Arlington.

A beautiful installation of 220 pinwheels, satisfyingly appropriate for spring, is on view at the Levitt Pavilion through the end of the month. But don’t let the pinwheels’ picture-perfect whimsy mislead you.

The installation was created by CASA of Tarrant County, and while the pinwheels are intended as images of hope and renewal, each one also represents a sobering reality: 220 Arlington children who have recently been served by CASA…or in other words, 220 children who have been victims of abuse and neglect.

The Arlington exhibit is one of many pinwheel installations on view across the country during Child Abuse Prevention Month, observed each year in April. Don Binnicker, CEO of CASA of Tarrant County, a child welfare advocacy organization, hopes the exhibit will inspire more Arlington residents to consider getting involved with the CASA mission.

“Children who have been traumatized by abuse and neglect need hope,” said Binnicker. “They need to know that someone will step up and advocate for their brighter futures. We have many wonderful Arlington residents who have answered the call to help these vulnerable kids, but we need more.”

CASA (which stands for Court Appointed Special Advocates) trains ordinary people from all walks of life to become not-so-ordinary advocates for children in foster care. Frequently, a CASA is one of the few consistent, reliable adult figures in the life of a child who is going through a confusing and often frightening experience.

Here’s how CASA works: Volunteers (also called advocates or CASAs) are assigned to one child or sibling group to advocate for the children’s best interests in court, in school and in other settings. CASAs get to know the child or siblings and everyone involved in their lives – family members, foster parents, case workers and others – in order to develop a realistic picture of the children’s unique situations.

Volunteers then use this information to support the children and their family members, and to make recommendations to the court that help determine the ultimate placement of the children once the case has ended: reunification with family of origin, or when that’s not possible, placement with other relatives or family friends or adoption.

CASA of Tarrant County served 1,165 area children in foster care in 2021 – but nearly 500 kids in care were left without an advocate, because there aren’t enough CASAs to meet the need.

“You don’t need special skills to become a CASA, just a heart to help kids,” said Binnicker. “Don’t assume you don’t have time or that you don’t have what it takes. Sign up for a volunteer information session and find out more.”

Visit to learn more about becoming a CASA or other ways to support children in foster care.

April is National Child Abuse Prevention Month. If you see abuse, report it to 1 (800) 252-5400 or go to If a child’s life is in danger, call 911.


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