You’re here because you care about helping vulnerable children.
So do we.
Ready to get started?
Children who find themselves in the foster care system need a voice. They need you to speak up for them.
What does it take to volunteer?
What is a CASA?
CASA stands for Court Appointed Special Advocate. CASAs are volunteers of all backgrounds who make a commitment to advocate for the needs of the child or sibling group with whom they are matched.
Why become a CASA?
In our overburdened system, no one else is specifically focused on the exact needs of this one child. Once the court has determined the parents’ neglect, the Social Worker has many other cases to monitor and foster parents are not charged with this responsibility. Plus, all of these people may change! As a CASA, you may well be the only consistent person in this child’s life, the only person who represents to the system what the child needs, and what is best for the child.
A child in the court’s care is frightened, removed from all they know, and often changes residences repeatedly. For these children, a CASA may be the only constant during this frightening, uncertain time. Few volunteer roles have such a critical and immediate impact on the life of a child as that of a CASA!
What does a CASA do?
The largest part of every Advocate’s responsibility is to get to know their assigned child. Your ultimate goal is to identify the child’s needs in order to relay that information to decision makers. The CASA learns the details of the child’s life by reviewing records, researching information, and talking to everyone involved in the child’s life–social workers, attorneys, judges, parents, foster parents, teachers, and family members. Based on what is learned by researching and getting to know the child, the CASA makes recommendations to the court that help the judge decide the best interest of every child that goes before them.
The Six Steps to Becoming a CASA
#1: Attend an Info Session
Sign up and attend a free information session where you will be able to hear from a member of our organization and have the opportunity to ask questions.
Complete a CASA application to volunteer in Bernalillo County. You can complete your application before attending an info session, so you are prepared for Step 3.
Tell us more about yourself and share why you’re interested in volunteering. Its our responsibility to make sure the volunteers are here for the right reasons!
Advocate University training will fully prepare you to be successful advocate for a child. Advocate University includes 30 hours of training, an opportunity to observe CASAs in action, and meet a judge.
#5: Meet Your Supervisor
At the end of the training you will be matched with your coach. A NM Kids matter staff member who will work closely with you on the child’s case, offer resources, and support throughout your CASA service.
You’ve completed training classes and assignments and passed the required background checks. You’re ready to advocate! After getting sworn in you’ll be matched with a child or set of siblings!