What is a CASA?
A CASA is a volunteer assigned by Madison County CASA to advocate for a child that is currently going through the court system. This means that the CASA is checking on the child in their foster situation and potentially looking for a new place for the child to live with family.
A CASA can also help verify that a parent is meeting the criteria that the court has set forth to get their children back in their custody. A CASA is a solid rock for a child to hold on to while the world might be falling apart.
What a CASA Volunteer does:
- MAINTAINS complete written records about the case, including appointments, interviews, and information gathered about the child.
- REPORTS any incidents of child abuse or neglect to the CASA supervisor, the child’s social worker, and the Child Abuse Hot Line.
- TALKS with all parties involved with the case, including the child.
- DETERMINES if a permanent plan has been created for the child, and whether appropriate services are being provided to the child and family.
- ASSURES that the child’s best interests are being represented at every stage of the case by attending court hearings and making written recommendation to the court on what orders are best for the child.
- MONITORS the case by visiting the child as often as necessary to observe whether the child’s essential needs are being met and whether the Judge’s orders are being carried out. Visits are to be in person at least once a month with some type of contact at least every two weeks.
- PARTICIPATES in any planning or treatment team meetings involving the child in order to keep informed of the child’s permanent plan.
- REMAINS actively involved in the case until formally discharged by the court.
What a CASA Volunteer does NOT do:
- Does NOT provide direct services such as counseling, legal advice, transportation, etc. to any parties that could lead to a conflict of interest or liability problems, even if the CASA is professionally trained to provide that service.
- Does NOT Cause a child or family to become dependent on the CASA volunteer for services that should be provided by other agencies or organizations.
- Does NOT take a child into the CASA’s home for any reason whatsoever.
- Does NOT provide transportation to a child or family member.
- Does NOT make placement arrangements for the child.