CASAs are specially trained volunteers who serve as officers of the court and “friends” to children in need. These volunteer advocates are assigned by judges to speak on behalf of children who have been placed in foster care due to abuse or neglect. Their primary objective is to ensure each child is placed in a safe, permanent home.
CASA was originally established as a solution to address the tragedy of abused and neglected children who linger in the foster care system with little hope for permanency. At the request of Judge Andrew Gallagher, the CASA Program began in our community in 1993 to provide him with information necessary to make decisions regarding the welfare of children previously removed from their homes due to abuse and neglect. Providing a critically important service, CASAs investigate all aspects of the child’s case, and report their findings in writing to the judge. On average, when a CASA is involved with a case, a child’s time in foster care is reduced from 3.4 years to 12 months or less.
“Kerry, my CASA, was my best friend and confidante. When I told my mom that I didn’t want to live with her anymore, Kerry was there to support me and guide me to my goals. She was my shoulder to cry on.”
“The only thing I wanted was someone who would be there for me, to be supportive and not criticize me.”
“Seven out of 13 children who are neglected or abused get a CASA. But all 13 need a CASA. Kids like me; we need compliments, and smiles to help us through the hard times. We need guidance and support. All 13 of us.”
Contact Vickie Ricord for more information on how you can become a CASA Volunteer at 318-425-4413 or firstname.lastname@example.org