COURT APPOINTED SPECIAL ADVOCATE DUTIES
Pursuant to Sections 9.1 - 153 of the Code of Virginia, the CASA shall:
- Investigate the case to provide independent factual information to the court.
- Submit to the court a written report of the investigation in compliance with statutory provisions regarding such reports. The written report shall include recommendations as to the child's welfare.
- Monitor the case to ensure compliance with court orders, including observing the child in his or her placement.
- Assist the Guardian ad litem in representation of the child's needs and best interest.
- Act as a mandated reporter for child abuse to neglect pursuant to Virginia Code 63.2-1509.
Pursuant to Virginia Code 9.1-156, a CASA disclose the content of any document or record to which the CASA may become privy, which is otherwise confidential pursuant to provisions of the Code of Virginia, except upon order of a court of competent jurisdiction.
Qualification for our CASA Volunteers
Volunteer advocates must be a high school graduate who is at least 21 years of age. The main qualification is a sincere concern for the well being of children. The volunteer must be a mature adult of sound character with good verbal and written communication skills. The CASA volunteer must be able to interact and talk with people of various educational and ethnic backgrounds. An essential characteristic is the ability to be objective and nonjudgmental. All volunteers must pass the FBI and Central Registry Background Checks.
The Requirements for our CASA Volunteers
After completing training, volunteers are required to make a one-year commitment to the CASA program. They attend continuing education sessions on an on-going basis, totalling 12 hours per year. an up-to-date file must be kept on each case and must be returned to the CASA office upon completion of the case. A written report is prepared for each court hearing in a timely manner.
Focus On Youth offers two types of training for potential volunteers.:
- Classroom Study
Classroom study training is offered in March and August, with an instructor and speakers. For more information, please contact Cyndi Worley at 276.403.5058.
- Independent Study
*Court observations and home study observations are required for both studies.
*CASA volunteers are required to complete 12 hours of training annually after initial training of 35 hours.
As a student of the Independent Study program, you complete most of the National CASA curriculum on your own time and meet with your instructor either one-on-one or in a group setting. Focus requires at least 10 hours of in person instruction throughout your training. Two court observations and a court report project are also a requirement to complete the Independent Study Program. Contact the CASA Volunteer Coordinator at 276.403.5058 for more information on the Independent Study program.