We believe every child deserves a safe, permanent home. Therefore, we train and provide ongoing mentoring to child advocate volunteers. These Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) work with abused and neglected children in Forsyth County, Georgia. CASAs speak on behalf of the child's best interests, until the child is in a safe and permanent home.
Every abused or neglected child in foster care should have an advocate (CASA volunteer) to provide several services that include reporting to the court what action is in that child's best interest to obtain a safe home and a permanent home as quickly as possible. CASA is the only agency that can provide direct services to abused children in foster care. A CASA volunteer is recognized by the state of Georgia as a guardian ad litem, which holds a volunteer to the same confidentiality standards as any Juvenile Court official.
CASA volunteers serve as the eyes and ears of the court. They interview anyone who may be able to shed light on the child’s needs-the child, parents, family members, medical professionals, therapists, social workers, school officials and neighbors. The CASA then appears in court to make recommendations to the judge about what is in the child’s best interest, based on this assessment. The CASA remains involved in the case until the child is placed in a safe, stable and permanent home.
HOW MUCH TIME DOES IT REQUIRE TO BE A CASA?
Each case is different. A CASA volunteer usually spends about 10-15 hours conducting research and interviews prior to the first court appearance. Once initiated into the system, volunteers work about 10 hours a month on each case.