Wanting to help, instructor and volunteer forced to adjust

Before the coronavirus pandemic, Beverly Gorman taught yoga and served as a volunteer for Butler County CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocates).

Both of those desires to help others are now complicated by shutdowns connected to the virus.

Gorman first started yoga in 1999 and trained and taught at Grace Tree Yoga Studio in West Chester Twp. She also taught at two branches of the Mid Pointe Library, at a convent in the Hartwell neighborhood of Cincinnati, in her neighbor’s basement, and also to the cross country team at Edgewood High School.

Gorman has been a CASA volunteer for Butler County since May 2015. The group advocates for abused and neglected children that are involved with a case. Through Children Services, they go to court and speak for the children, seeking their best interests.

“These cases are complicated and take a long time to get proper care, interventions in form of therapies, etc,” said Gorman. “Healing doesn’t take place quickly. I’ve learned it takes a team of individuals working together with the goal of getting what is in the child’s best interest.”

It is confusing now with COVID-19.

“This is just such an uncertain time for all of us,” said Gordon. “I’m on a case for three preschool siblings. They’re living in a foster home nearby. We have shared Facebook messages and videos to stay in touch. All court hearings have been delayed for now.

“I have visited the children by standing outside the patio window while they talk and show off for me. The foster parents are doing a wonderful job with them. They have taught them letters, numbers, and are good speech models.

“For Easter, I took l took plastic eggs on yarn and strung them up on a tree outside the patio door. Also, some wrapped candy, stickers, etc. This delighted the kids.

CASA volunteers have a say in what they believe is in a child’s best interest, and more volunteers are needed.

“The need is great especially for men, who can be a positive role models for kids that don’t have good male role models in their lives,” Gorman said.

Another aspect of Gorman’s life is her yoga studio, which has been closed. 

“I have been teaching yoga though,” she said. “Using the free Zoom meeting app, I’m teaching for the studio until their lease ends in June. I have offered free 30-minute classes every Monday, Wednesday and Friday to my students from the library and neighborhood, friends and family. This keeps me practicing as well as keeping our yoga community connected until this virus is tamed.”

Beverly’s husband, Mark, is retiring at the end of April as an engineer at GE. The Gormans have a son, Kyle, a linguistics professor at City University of New York who lives in Brooklyn.

“He’s in the epicenter,” she said. “He is well, but has cabin fever in his tiny apartment, trying to work from home. He’s also joining me for some yoga practices. It gives me peace of mind to see him and spend time with him in a nurturing way.”

To become a CASA volunteer, email casa@parachute.casa.org or call 513-867-5010

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Contact this reporter at hir54bel@gmail.com

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