Become a CASA Volunteer!
CASA volunteers are trained, caring adults who place themselves at the center of a child’s life and serve in their best interest. They serve during the scariest time of a child’s life, the time they are removed from the only home they have ever known and placed in a system of strangers.
A CASA volunteer is a court appointed special advocate. It is a volunteer commitment unlike any other. Mandated by Oklahoma state statutes, a CASA volunteer is sworn in as an officer of the court. They have access to all the important information and privilege needed to make life changing, best interest decisions for the children of Oklahoma County.
The effects the system leaves on children generation after generation is a piece of the puzzle that helps further perpetuate the need for the system. This cycle can only be intervened by actions that fall outside the unnatural setting of out of home placements, shelters, foster care, courtrooms, caseworkers, and the list goes on.
These actions, for most of us, were provided by our parents. In the court setting, this role is most often times left empty unless a child is assigned a CASA volunteer.
- To be a CASA volunteer, you must at least be 21 years old.
- Able to pass a background check
Making a Difference
CASA volunteers, who commit to at least one year of advocacy and undergo an extensive training program (40 hours of initial training; 12 hours annually in-service), normally become case experts. They meet monthly with the children in the case, interview all of the principals involved in the action (e.g., parents, foster parents, social workers, teachers, law enforcement, etc.), and attend all court hearings. The National CASA Association has determined that children with a CASA volunteer on their cases:
- Receive more services than those without;
- Do better in school (more likely to pass courses, less likely to exhibit poor conduct, and less likely to be expelled);
- Are more likely to be adopted;
- Are half as likely to reenter foster care;
- Are substantially less likely to remain in long term foster care.