When Mary first met her CASA child she wondered immediately how she would be able to make a difference as twelve-year-old Holly was severely autistic, non-verbal and not toilet trained.  But Mary got right to work, reading books about autism, contacting experts and reaching out to community specialists.  Mary was able to connect Holly’s caregivers with occupational and speech therapists specializing in autism diagnoses.  She attended therapy sessions with Holly to learn what techniques were being utilized to help the family communicate with Holly and to teach her to accomplish tasks on her own.  When the case closed out, Holly was toilet trained, could dress herself, communicate her wants and needs non-verbally and self soothe when agitated.  She was also showing affection to Mary where previously she had only shown affection to her caregivers.