The tireless, all-volunteer team of court-appointed special advocates (CASA) at Children's Voice: CASA, Inc. give a voice to the unheard children of Douglas County. A chapter of the National CASA and Georgia CASA, the local outpost advocates for the best interests of abused and neglected children involved in juvenile-court deprivation proceedings, speaking up for the needs of children who might otherwise get lost in the overburdened legal and social-services system. The volunteers—each of whom has completed 30 hours of pre-service training and 10 hours of court observation—take on a wide range of responsibilities on behalf of children, including gathering information, appearing in court, seeking solutions, and explaining the process to the child.
Conceived in Seattle in 1976, National CASA originated as a way to empower abused and neglected children. Nationwide, advocates have helped more than two million children find safe, permanent homes since the organization’s founding. In the last year alone, volunteers have represented 243,000 children—about half of the children in the country’s child-welfare system at a given time.
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