Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) Program
What is CASA?
CASA stands for Court Appointed Special Advocates. A national program, CASA trains volunteers to help abused and neglected children in the juvenile court system. A CASA volunteer assesses the child’s situation and reports to the judge what is in the best interest of the child. Our goal is to advocate for a safe, permanent home for each child.
How Bartow CASA Helps
After children have been removed from their home and entered the Georgia court system, a judge can appoint a CASA volunteer. The CASA volunteer gathers information about the child’s situation, background, family, friends and acquaintances, attends court proceedings, and makes a recommendation to the judge to help the court make a sound decision about the child’s future.
Research suggests that children who have been assigned CASA volunteers tend to spend less time in the custody of the court and less time within the foster care system, than those who do not have CASA’s. Research also demonstrates that these children can overcome their trauma if the caring adults in their lives help find a safe, permanent home in which they can heal. Those who do not have this special advocate in their lives often experience school failure, joblessness, welfare dependency, criminality, mental illness and often become abusers themselves.
CASA volunteers are the most intensely trained of all Advocates’ volunteers, with over 30 hours of class time plus experience in DFCS, Juvenile Court, and so on.
To find out more about becoming a Bartow CASA volunteer, contact Ava Lipscomb, Program Director, at 770-386-1060.
Visit the Georgia CASA web page: www.gacasa.org