My daughter, Lorien, was the inspiration for my applying to be a CASA volunteer. I was sworn in in the middle of August, and am working on my first case.
CASA stands for “Court Appointed Special Advocate.” There are CASA programs in operation all over the United States. CASA volunteers work closely with Judges in cases involving children – they are the Court’s eyes and ears focused on the children. That’s not to say other agencies involved are not focused as well. There are issues; here’s a picture of why CASA volunteers are so important to those children in need:
CASA Volunteers visit the child and gather information, they interview those involved in the child’s life, they review records related the the child and the family, attend court hearings, identify potential resources to meet the child’s needs – and CASA Volunteers make recommendations to Judges.
The Montana 20th Judicial District, which is the area covered by my CASA appointment, covers two counties, and quite a large area. The area is not hugely populous, but there are many children in need of the type of help CASA provides. It’s not a very easy volunteer position, and sometimes it can take me beyond my accustomed comfort range. That’s good, and I’m happy to help however I can.
There is always a need for more volunteers. If you’re looking to volunteer for something highly rewarding, take a look at CASA.