Newport News CASA is a non-profit organization of volunteers who are voices for abused and neglected children. The courts appoint CASA volunteers to gather information and make recommendations to help judges decide what is best for each child.
Volunteers get to know the child by talking with everyone in that child’s life: parents and relatives, foster parents, teachers, medical professionals, attorneys, social workers and others. They use the information they gather to inform judges and others of what the child needs and what will be the best permanent home for them.
The CASA program is a proven, reliable and economic model of support that has meant the difference between success and failure in thousands of children. Many more children would thrive if they had the intensive intervention of a CASA volunteer.
It’s also worth noting that approximately 50% of the children in need are boys, so we have a special need for more men to stand up and be counted as everyday heroes and role models in the lives of these future men.
- Gather Information/Investigate: Review documents and records, interview the children, family members and professionals in their lives.
- Document Findings: Provide written reports at court hearings.
- Appear In Court: Advocate for the child’s best interests and provide testimony when necessary.
- Explain What Is Going On: Help the child understand the court proceedings.
- “Be The Glue”: Seek cooperative solutions among individuals and organizations involved in the children’s lives. As one volunteer said: Be the glue that connects the pieces in a complicated child welfare system.
- Recommend Services: Ensure that the children and their family are receiving appropriate services and advocate for those that are not immediately available. Bring concerns about the child’s health, education, mental health, etc. to the appropriate professionals.
- Monitor Case Plans And Court Orders: Check to see that plans are being followed and mandated review hearings are being held.
- Keep The Court Informed: Update the court on developments with agencies and family members. Ensure that appropriate motions are filed on behalf of the child so the court knows about any changes in the child’s situation.
- 21 years old
- High School Diploma
- No felony convictions/submit to a background check
- Complete 34hours of initial training including 4 hours of court observation
- Complete 12 hours annual in-service training
- Maintain confidentiality of all client and court information
- Ability to communicate effectively both orally and in writing
- Ability to respect and relate to people from various backgrounds
- Desire to advocate for a child and be his/her volunteer voice in court
- Be available for 3-5 hours a week to dedicate to CASA work
- Commit to the length of a case (average 12-18 months).
CASA does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, creed, religious preference, gender, gender expression, disability, sexual preference, or veteran status. Unfortunately, not every applicant is accepted for our volunteer positions. CASA reserves the right to deny a volunteer position to any applicant without explanation.