How Did CASA Programs Start?
In 1977, Judge Soukup in Seattle, WA conceived the idea of using trained community volunteers to speak for the best interests of abused and neglected children in court. The program was so successful that judges across the country began using citizen advocates. The U.S. Congress encouraged expansion of CASA programs with its passage of the Victims of Child Abuse Act in 1990. Today, there are nearly 1,000 local programs nationally that support the volunteers serving children, including Oregon’s 22 local programs.
OREGON CASA NETWORK
A CASA Is...
Court Appointed Special Advocates – CASAs – are specially trained volunteers that the local court appoints to advocate for the best interests of children who have been traumatized by abuse or neglect to make sure these children are safe and thrive.
Change a Child's Story
“Being in foster care is living in a constant state of flux: homes, schools, families… everything is always changing, often suddenly and without warning. My only constant was my CASA advocate. Without her, I would have been lost in the system.”
– Melissa, foster care alumni
Make a Difference
Children with CASA volunteers are less likely to suffer re-abuse and more likely to find a permanent home, spend an average of five months less time in foster care, and do better in school. With your support, we change lives.