Facilitation Observation Analysis: The CASA Meeting
I really enjoy going to the CASA house because the atmosphere is very welcoming and warm there. It is a place where you meet a lot of new people and you enjoy everyone’s happiness because they are alive to see another day. The very first time I actually went into the CASA house was when the FIG’s had a meet and greet dinner over there. What better of a place to go to; after such a long day and your parents are gone and you don’t know anyone? It would be the CASA, the director of the CASA is a Hispanic women named, “Oneyda”. Over the summer I was a summer scholar and I was reading this series of books at the time. So I would pretty much always be at the library checking up to see if my book was there or not. Long story short, I met one of the directors and she told me to go to the CASA. She told me that because I would meet a lot of other Natives there and the Director is a very nice woman. This is when I first heard of Oneyda. She is such a lovely person and very kind, friendly, and motherly. So I really liked her after I met her because she reminded me of my mom. If you have not had the chance to meet this lovely woman at the CASA, please do because she is absolutely an amazing person.
When I first met her at the meet and greet she told the FIG group why CASA house actually stood for. The CASA is a Cultural Awareness Student Achievement house the focuses on students who want their culture to be known. It does not only stop there but the CASA is like a triangle, they stand for academic achievement, cultural awareness and on the bottom for the foundation is a strong social connection. Each side of that triangle symbolizes why CASA is alive. The world needs to see that there are so many bright kids out there that have different backgrounds but all have one dream to succeed. The CASA is a place where EVERYONE can call home and go back to if they need a stress reliever. I find it rather interesting, that this CASA house is actually a Hispanic Serving Institution that has opened their arms to other global nationalities. The purpose of the house is for us to change more about ourselves in new/old ways and to show the world that culture matters. And because we are knowledgeable about cultures, we should show our native pride and help one another become successful.
The CASA had a meeting just today and we had a lot of talk about within a short period of time. The meeting first started off with us socializing and then of course we had our Friday lunch- in and then begun the meeting. The Agenda for our meeting was to talk about the different fundraisers that we needed to do in order to have the money to get the CASA things. Some of the fundraisers we were planning on doing was of course the good ol’ chili cook off that will happen in September. The CASA usually sells food for example, “Chico’s and Beans”. For those that do not know what that is, it is steamed corn and beans that are cooked together with little bits of meat. It is actually really good for those that have never tried it before. I have been told that when the CASA sells food they make, it tends to go right away. So make sure if we do sell, then you better get some chico’s and beans. Some other fundraisers were to help the HICCA and this is the Hispanic Club. We want to raise money for the people that will be going to Chicago for an education conference in October. This will take a lot more fundraising depending on how much more money that we have to fundraise. Another fundraiser we also talked about was one that involved food again, but at the football games right outside the field. We think that after a few weeks into the football season, some people would know that we would be there.
Our main focus on the meeting was to let people know what was being planned such as fundraisers, new members, and other needs for the CASA. And another main focus we had was the bill that we have to write in order to get some of the funds that we need for the Hispanic Club. But next on the agenda we talked about how we should bring in the Adams community and show them what the CASA does with the Hispanic Club. That it is not only about food but coming together as a community. And learning about other cultures and well as helping each other succeed. We also talked about spreading the knowledge around about the Hispanic Club as well for example doing movie nights, game shows, and etc. And so the Adams community could know what the Hispanic Club does. I really learned that the CASA is not lead by Oneyda but is lead by the students that are involved with CASA. It is a really good club that is doing really good on making the students contribute their time as well as learning about others. The meeting closure was a blessing with sage that is very traditional with many native cultures. Oneyda had us all lay down and tense everything on our body and she walked around us blessing the air with sage. And after awhile she would say to not tense this body part and would start from the head all the way down to the toes. It was pretty cool because everyone has had a stressful two weeks coming here to Adams again.