CASA volunteer advocates are appointed by family court judges to ensure that the best interests of children who have been abused or neglected and are in DYFS care are met. In order to do this, the CASA volunteer advocate must investigate the facts of the case, recommend a course of action to the court, facilitate the resolution of the presenting problems, and monitor the progress toward the established goals. CASA SHaW serves children in Somerset, Hunterdon, and Warren Counties in central New Jersey.Requirements of a CASA:
a. Attend an orientation session (approximately 2 hours);
b. Attend all basic training sessions (approximately 30 hours);
c. Attend court observation (approximately 4 hours);
d. Complete 12 hours in-service training sessions per year;
e. Attend case review sessions as scheduled.
a. Monthly visitation with child/children involved in your case;
b. Maintain a complete, legible, up-to-date case file on each assigned case;
c. Keep abreast of all deadlines and timetables involved in your case;
d. Turn in reports on time;
e. Devote sufficient time to investigation and follow-up of assigned case.
a. Maintain communication with CASA supervisor on all case activity;
b. Meet regularly for supervision;
c. Periodic assessments with CASA supervisor: initial 3 month review, plus an annual review after one year.
a. Maintain strict confidentiality in accordance with CASA SHaW's policies.
a. Minimum one year commitment.
Specific duties of a CASA volunteer advocate:
a. Gather all relevant facts through
personal interviews and a review
of all records, documents and
b. Interview interested parties (child, family members, foster family, teachers, doctors, therapists, social service worker, etc.) to determine facts;
c. Make visits with other agencies (e.g., DYFS, Catholic Charities, etc.) to observe parent-child interaction;
d. Make visits to homes suggested as permanent or temporary placement;
e. Research alternatives available for the child (relatives, foster placement, etc.);
f. Work with relevant parties to develop a permanency plan for the child.
2. Advocate and Recommend:
a. Ensure that all relevant facts are before the court at hearings through written reports submitted to the court before each hearing and possibly direct testimony;
b. Prepare a written report stating findings and a recommendation for permanent disposition of the case;
c. Submit the report to supervisor no fewer than ten days prior to the court hearing;
d. Appear in Court/Child Placement Review Board hearings to observe what is decided with regards to the case.
3. Facilitate and Monitor:
a. Monitor compliance with court-mandated, and/or agreed-upon, obligations;
b. Assist in the implementation of any plan prescribed by the court (whether recommended in the CASA volunteer advocate's report or not);
c. Continue contact with the child, family and others to monitor progress towards goals decreed by the court.
Good Match For
Requirements & Commitment
- Background Check
- Must be at least 21
- Orientation or Training
- 10-25 hours per month