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What does it take to be a CASA volunteer?
- COMMITMENT:When a CASA volunteer takes on a case, he/she takes on a child’s future. CASA volunteers are asked to stay with the case until it is resolved. This may take a year or (usually) longer. The amount of time given to a case will vary depending on the ages and needs of the children, stage of the proceedings when the case is assigned, and the complexity of the case.
- OBJECTIVITY:The CASA volunteer’s role is to represent the best interests of the child, and that may not always be what the child wants. CASA volunteers must be willing to talk to everyone involved in the case in order to get a clear picture of the child’s life. The CASA volunteer must remain objective and base their recommendations on the information they have gathered. Most importantly, the CASA volunteer visits the child at least once a month, in order to gain an understanding of his/her situation.
- COMMUNICATION SKILLS:CASA volunteers must be able to talk to a wide variety of people, from healthcare professionals, attorneys, caregivers, to school officials, and parents. CASA volunteers must be able to articulate their findings in writing and present to the court with a unique “child centered” perspective, to help the Judge make the best decisions for these children.