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Becoming a Richmond CASA Volunteer
Richmond CASA is seeking highly motivated individuals interested in advocating for the best interest of children who have been abused and/or neglected in the City of Richmond.
CASA volunteer candidates must meet the following criteria:
- Be 21 years of age
- Be able to devote time for training, meetings, court appearances and case follow-up (New volunteer training is 35 hours; post training, service is approximately 15 hours per month)
- Have excellent written and oral communication skills
- Have a professional attitude
- Have a genuine desire to help a child in need
- Have no significant criminal, child abuse registry, or driving violations history
If you have questions about becoming a CASA volunteer, please contact Heather Farber at: Heather.Farber@richmondgov.com or 804-646-5180.
Training: Richmond CASA volunteers participate in 35 hours of pre-service training, which involves 30 hours of classroom interaction and 5 hours of courtroom observation. Volunteers learn courtroom procedure from judges, lawyers, social workers and court personnel. CASAs also learn effective advocacy techniques for children and are educated about specific topics including child abuse, sexual abuse, to early childhood development, adolescent behavior, mental health issues, cultural competency, social services, and report writing. Once training is completed, CASAs are sworn in by a Richmond Juvenile and Domestic Relations Court Judge.
Support: A CASA case manager is always available to discuss your case, help you solve problems and provide any support you may need.
Commitment: A CASA volunteer can have a direct affect on a child’s future. Some cases are settled in less than a year but some may last longer. The amount of time you spend on a case will vary depending on the progress of the proceedings. During the life of a case our volunteers spend an average of 12 – 15 hours per month interacting with the child and the other people involved in the child’s life and documenting this information for the court.
Objectivity: Your role as a CASA volunteer is to represent the best interest of the child. You must be able to talk with everyone involved in the case and remain objective in your recommendations.
Communication Skills:A child’s future depends on your ability to communicate well. As a CASA, you will need to speak with a variety of people, from healthcare professionals to teachers to parents. Good communication skills, including writing reports, are needed to be an effective advocate for the child.