Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASAs) are trained volunteers from the community who speak up for abused and/or neglected children in court.
Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASAs) are trained volunteers from the community who speak up for the best interests of children in the courtroom. Children helped by CASA volunteers include those for whom home placement is being determined in the Dependency and Neglect Court filings. Most of the children are victims of abuse and neglect.
CASA volunteers are appointed to a case by a judge and the volunteer’s goal is to provide a carefully researched background of the child, as well as information based on an investigation of the child’s current needs, to help the Court make a sound decision about the child’s future.
Each case is as unique as the child involved.
The CASA volunteer must determine if it is in a child’s best interest to stay with his or her parents or guardians, be placed in foster care, or to be freed for permanent adoption. The CASA volunteer makes recommendations regarding the child’s best interests, including placement, to the judge, and follows through on the case until it is permanently resolved. They remain assigned to a child for the life of the case, and are often the only stable factor in what can be a frightening and difficult ordeal of trials and placements for a child in the court system.