Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. said: “Life’s most persistent and urgent question is: ‘What are you doing for others?’”

We quote Dr. King as we celebrate “Black History Month” with a call for action for America’s most vulnerable boys and girls, foster children who have been abused and neglected, abandoned and traumatized.

We are Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA)/Prince George’s County, and we recruit, train and supervise CASAs to stand up on behalf of these children.

And in response to threatened cutbacks in Washington and elsewhere to anti-poverty programs, we are increasing our efforts.

We are confident that if Dr. King was alive today, he would back our campaign to free foster children from impoverished neighborhoods and give them equal opportunities.

In doing so, Dr. King might even cite his 1963 “I Have a Dream” speech, in which he rallied the nation toward justice for all.

We serve Prince George’s County, the wealthiest predominately African-American county in the nation. Yet it still has a long way to go to fulfill King’s “Dream.”

The county suffers from high crime and poverty rates, and a troubled school system. These challenges create roadblocks, particularly for foster children, more than half of whom nationwide drop out of high school, increasing their chances of a life in poverty.

We opened our doors in 2001 and, like other CASA organizations across the country, have made a real difference.

Studies show that foster children with CASAs do far better than those without one. With the help of a CASA, a foster child is more apt to graduate from high school, escape poverty and even live longer.

We now have about 150 CASAs in a county with more than 400 foster children.

Our goal is to have one CASA for each child.

In the spirit of Dr. King’s question – “What are you doing for others?” – we ask that you consider becoming a CASA.

Please call: (301) 209-0491 or email volunteer@pgcasa.org.

Dr. King would be proud of you.

And a foster child would thank you.