What Is A Court Appointed Special Advocate?

A Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA) is a trained volunteer child advocate sworn in by the Family Court Judge to represent the best interest of children who are dependent, abused or neglected and are active cases in the Juvenile Court System. The CASA volunteer investigates the child’s circumstances, provides fact-based information and makes recommendations to the court while becoming a source of support for the child.

The CASA program is independent, but works closely with the court, social workers, therapists, attorneys, care providers and other professionals involved in a child’s case. CASA volunteers work under the direct supervision of the CASA Program Director or Volunteer Coordinators to further the child’s welfare and to expedite the case through the system.

The CASA volunteer’s ultimate goal is to move the child out of temporary placement, usually in the foster care system, into a safe and permanent home. This could mean return to the parent’s care, adoption, the appointment of a legal guardian, or some other permanent living arrangement that satisfies the court and fulfills the child’s needs.

“It terrified me to make decisions about kids when I didn’t have anybody there.” – Judge David W. Soukup

If you are interested in volunteering as a CASA Advocate, you can click here to learn more.

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