What is a CASA? An Inside Look at Court Appointed Special Advocates
There is a saying, “volunteers do not necessarily have the time; they just have the heart.” Giving back to your community and the world is a fulfilling endeavor. People who volunteer do it for a variety of reasons. Volunteering offers them the chance to give something back to the community or make a difference to the people around them. It also provides an opportunity to develop new skills or build on existing experience and knowledge. And these are the exact reasons why people become CASA volunteers.
What is CASA?
CASA’s are Court Appointed Special Advocates that are appointed by judges to watch over and advocate for abused and neglected children. It is because of the help of CASA’s that these children do not get lost in the overburdened legal and social service system or languish in inappropriate group or foster homes. Volunteers stay with each case until it is closed and the child is placed in a safe, permanent home. For many abused children, their CASA volunteer will be the one constant adult presence in their lives.
How can you become a CASA?
CASA welcomes and encourages all people from all cultures and professions, and of all ethnic and educational backgrounds. And unlike most volunteer agencies, CASA has no required special background or education because once you are accepted into the program, you will receive all necessary training in courtroom procedures, social services, the juvenile justice system and the special needs of abused and neglected children. The only requirements to become a volunteer is (1) you must be 21 years old, (2) you must be willing to complete necessary background checks, provide references and participate in an interview, (3) you must complete a minimum of 30 hours of pre-service training, (4) you need to be available for court appearances, with advance notice, and (5) you must willing to commit to the CASA program until your first case is closed.
Why should you volunteer?
Becoming a CASA volunteer is an investment of time, energy and heart. Winston Churchill once said, “You make a living by what you get. You make a life by what you give.” Just imagine the life you can make for yourself by volunteering your time to these children. Not only that—but imagine the life you can make for these children by volunteering your time. By opening your heart to these children and volunteering, you not only automatically achieved greatness by giving yourself to a cause for nothing in return, but you have succeeded in providing a sense of safety in the lives of abused and neglected children.
This blog article was written and published by Thrive Social LLC www.thrivesocialmi.com