CASA Presents Opportunity: Volunteer to Advocate for Abused and Neglected Children in the Foster Care System

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If you are looking for a great cause to devote some of your time to, here is your chance! Voices for Children, CASA of Brazos Valley is in need of new volunteers to advocate for abused and neglected children.

Get the opportunity to be a guardian ad litem and stand up in court to advocate for those who need it most, children in the foster care system. Every year, CASA volunteers change the lives of thousands of boys and girls across the country by finding them a loving home and saving them from being caught in the foster care system like so many of the children before them.

Having a CASA shortens a child’s time in the foster care system by an average of seven months. With the individualized approach, a CASA is poised to be able to detect problems early and bring the challenges as well as possible solutions to the parties’ attention. This means these challenges and possible solutions can be addressed immediately, avoiding placement changes, court delays, or additional court hearings.

In a survey of Texas judges (University of Texas/Texas CASA, 2009), 94 percent of responding judges said that having a CASA provided a better opportunity for a positive outcome and improved the court process.

Honorable Judge John Delaney of Brazos County had this to say about the unique perspective CASA volunteers bring to the judicial system, “CASA workers provide a special dimension in child abuse/neglect cases by reporting directly to the court their observations of the performance of government agencies and the needs of the children we have a duty to serve.”

Voices for Children volunteer training for the spring starts Feb. 3. Interested volunteers must be 21 years of age and complete an application and interview prior to training. The training is four weeks long and will cover all topics related to being a CASA. At the end of the training, each new volunteer is sworn in by a judge to be a Court Appointed Special Advocate and can immediately begin working to make a positive impact on a child’s life. To become a CASA visit www.vfcbrazos.org/volunteer/.

Voices for Children, CASA of Brazos Valley is a nonprofit program that recruits and trains volunteers (Court Appointed Special Advocates or CASAs) in the community to advocate for children that have been removed from their home and/or are in the foster care system. Last year, Voices for Children served more than 200 children in Brazos, Burleson, Grimes, Leon, and Madison counties.