The abrupt discontinuance of the Laguna Beach Community Clinic's hot line for its Crisis and Sexual Assault Program (CASA) totally surprised fund-raising members of the Friends of CASA, who thought the group was well on its way to providing funds for this year's budget. That's why the group was formed last year.
As a supporter of the total clinic and its medical and counseling services as well as CASA, I hesitate to appear critical of such a hard-working, stretched-to-the limit organization as the LBCC. They're continually forced to try to perform miracles with very little money. The people to whom they provide affordable, quality care are in the great percentage people with jobs, who for one reason or another do not have or cannot afford health insurance. Many dedicated physicians, nurses and other professionals donate countless hours.
I stress this in praise of the clinic, and also because I feel the clinic board that voted to discontinue the hot line perhaps underestimates the similar dedication and interest of those also raising funds for CASA. Admittedly, fund-raising is slow, but for a group established only a year, the Friends of CASA appears to have been off to a good start.
The CASA hot line has served south Orange County for at least 13 years. I think those of us who are friends of CASA should have been represented in this decision and given a chance to step "once more into the breach." I think the group could have saved the program, which deserved to be saved.
VIRGINIA M. SNYDER