Oregon CASA Network, an affiliate of the National CASA Association, is the statewide member organization for Oregon’s 22 local CASA programs. The local programs recruit, screen, train and support CASA volunteers.
What Does OCN Do?
Our mission is to lead Oregon’s CASA programs to provide a strong voice for every abused and neglected child statewide. We do this by:
- Promoting awareness of Oregon’s CASA programs, CASA volunteers, and children who have experienced abuse or neglect.
- Supporting local program offices (capacity-building, training, technical assistance, collaboration, resource library, cross-program knowledge sharing, pass-through funding).
- Working with the National CASA/GAL Network to support strategic expansion and development of CASA programs throughout the state.
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.