The CASA program was created by a Seattle Washington judge who was concerned with his decisions about how to handle cases with abused and neglected children without sufficient information.
This judge began using trained community volunteers to speak for the best interests of these children in court. The program was such a great success in Seattle that very soon judges across the country decided to use citizen advocates.
Perhaps the hardest decision a judge will ever make is to remove a child from a birth family.
For people outside the legal system, it is important to recognize the adversarial nature of courts and law in America. Divorce law is a tiny example of how painful our system makes the resolution of family legal matters. Child abuse and neglect are a sad but very real part of life in America and children must be protected against dangerous home environments.
Today, federal law mandates that children in need of protection will have a CASA voice in the courtroom. After all, a five or six year old has not much more comprehension or ability to testify than a three year old in a courtroom setting.
Not all CASA members are volunteers. Some CASA are paid staff and some are attorneys.
As a long time volunteer CASA, I am partial to the volunteer programs mainly because we take fewer cases and by taking fewer cases we can spend more time and have more involvement with the child and family (read my book; http://www.invisiblechildren.org/our-book/ ) — these children really do need all the time, concern, and resources that this community can deliver.
The following are a few CASA blogs and websites I have discovered that give a snapshot of CASA programs and accomplishments:
National CASA Youtube:
You Tube CASA video
Send us your favorite CASA blogs and website and we will post them here;
send to email@example.com
It is a bigger step to convince people that healthy children become healthy citizens, but it is true.
- Support at risk children! Become a CASA volunteer or start a KARA group in your community.
- Have something to add? Attach a comment to this blog post or Contact Us to tell us your point of view or story.
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- Buy our book or listen to it (for free)
- Join the public debate for children (they have no senator, lobby, or voice)