The Eighth Judicial District Court Appointed Special Advocate Program (CASA) has been awarded certification by the National CASA Association, and passed the national organization’s high standards for quality child advocacy with flying colors.
The CASA program recruits, screens, trains and supports volunteers to represent the best interests of hundreds of foster children annually. The advocates represent the children in school, family team meetings, and in court. Volunteering for the program involves a two-year commitment and a willingness to spend quality time with the children to advocate for them. In 1980, Judge John Mendoza led the creation of the Clark County CASA Program. The CASA mission continues to be fully supported by Family Court judges.
“Receiving national certification with such high marks for our CASA program is an affirmation of the commitment of our volunteers and staff,” said Family Court Judge Frank Sullivan, who oversees the CASA program. “Hundreds of children receiving services under the supervision of Family Court benefit from the objective adult voice that CASA volunteers bring. We currently have around 3,500 children who are in foster care under the supervision of Family Court and 353 CASA volunteers. Our goal is to have a CASA for every child in foster care.”
For those who want to volunteer with CASA, monthly orientations are held on the third Wednesday of each month to provide more information about the program. Upcoming orientations will be held at the Government Center, 500 S. Grand Central Pkwy. For more information about the program please call 702-455-4306, visit www.casalasvegas.org or Facebook at www.facebook.com/#!/CASALasVegas.
“CASA volunteers help traumatized children convey important information in court, at school and in meetings that impact their circumstances,” said Family Division Presiding Judge Charles Hoskin. “Without CASA volunteers, children are often left without a voice in court. I am extremely pleased that our CASA program has been nationally certified with such high marks as they work to voice the concerns of young people who face tremendous challenges.”
According to Tara Perry, Interim CEO/Chief Operating Officer of the National CASA Association, “The National CASA quality assurance process is very rigorous, and reflects our commitment to ensure every child served has a powerful volunteer advocate working on their behalf and a strong program supporting their work. This certification says the Eighth Judicial District CASA program has demonstrated