CASA of Los Angeles mobilizes community volunteers to advocate for children who have experienced abuse and neglect.
Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA) volunteers ensure that the children with whom they are paired have the services and support needed in the areas important to all children: stable homes, education, and healthcare. As sworn officers of the court, CASA volunteers visit their child on a regular basis, interact with professionals and others involved in the child’s case, gather information on specific issues in the child’s life that need attention, and make recommendations directly to the child’s judge. Volunteers’ advocacy activities with children are focused on: ensuring safety during their time in the dependency system; facilitating permanency through placement with parents, other family, or adoption; and promoting enhanced well-being.
The CASA organization trains its volunteers and takes great attention to detail, to be sure that each volunteer is well-screened and prepared to take on the very important role of being a well-informed and resourceful advocate for the foster child in need. They are continuously giving their volunteers opportunities to learn more, to received in-service training on different subject matters pertinent to the children in the foster care system. Each volunteer is paired up with a supervisor who is readily available to answer any question and assist the volunteer in the entire process. This is an invaluable organization/service to the children in the foster care system. To me, CASAs are the voice for the voiceless, the muscle for the powerless, with the hope and stamina needed to be there for the child.
I've been a CASA since 2012, and it's been one of the most meaningful volunteer experiences I've ever had. The opportunity to build an authentic, supportive relationship with a child over an extended period of time has been profound. In our role as CASAs we are also able to engage with key people in their family and in the child welfare system who can make a really difference in the child's well being. CASA of Los Angeles does a great job in training and supporting volunteers. I really encourage anyone interested in supporting youth to look into CASA. I'd especially encourage people of color and lgtbq folks to consider becoming CASAs, as the youth can definitely benefit from role models who are reflective of their identities.
I would recommend this organization primarily because this volunteer job gives people the opportunity to profoundly benefit the lives of children and their families. Secondly with this job you learn valuable information and receive training that is useful in many ways.
I have been volunteering with CASA for two years. During that time I have been able to help a mother and child reunite; to help find a safe,permanent home for an abused child and to help make sure another child receives the medical, psychological and educational assistance he needs.
CASA is the most satisfying volunteer work I can imagine. As a court officer I have the ability to change the life course of a child who might otherwise be forgotten in the foster system.
The CASA organization provides excellent training and on-going support for your work with the children. This opportunity is not for everyone but for those who volunteer with CASA it is a life changing, life affirming experience.