Is there a typical volunteer advocate?
Volunteer advocates come from every walk of life. They range in age from 21 to 81, represent various educational and ethnic backgrounds, and are students, retirees, teachers, firefighters, realtors and many other diverse members of our community. Aside from their volunteer responsibility, half of our volunteers have full-time jobs. They all share a commitment to improving children’s lives, a willingness to learn and an open mind towards life experiences different from their own.
What does the time commitment look like for each volunteer role?
CASA volunteers commit to spending 10-20 hours per month for the duration of one specific case. We ask for an average commitment of 18 months to give plenty of time to fulfill case needs and attention.
Do CASA volunteers stay in contact with children after the case closes?
Once a case is over and children have safely reached permanency, the need for CASA ends, and CASA requires that volunteers end their contact with the children and family after a case closes. If a volunteer advocate remains in a child’s life, they become a reminder and an anchor to a time of instability and confusion for children, so it is important to have a healthy transition out of their lives at this time.
In certain occasions, a teen who ages out of care at age 18 may choose to keep their CASA volunteer in their lives as a supportive adult connection, but no longer in the role of advocate or guardian ad litem.
What are the requirements for becoming a volunteer advocate?
Volunteers must be at least 21 years of age and be able to pass extensive reference, Child Protective Services, sex offender registry and criminal background checks before becoming a volunteer. Applicants are required to complete an application, attend a pre-training interview, and participate in CASA training. Volunteers should have effective oral and written communication skills, and comfort with computer technology including email and word processing. You may not be a current foster parent or be in the process of adopting a child from Child Protective Services. If an attorney, you may not concurrently be appointed to any cases involving Children, Youth & Families Department (CYFD) in Bernalillo County.
How many cases on average does a volunteer advocate carry at a time?
Typically each volunteer advocate carries one case at a time which allows them to focus on the needs of one child or family of children.
If you are looking for a truly unique and impactful volunteer opportunity in the Bernalillo area and you care about the best interest of children, CASA is right for you. Our vision is to provide a trained volunteer advocate, a safe home, and a promising future for every child who needs us. If you have questions about volunteering for CASA and would like to speak to a recruiter, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.