CASA Advocate Training Schedule 2021
Advocates are required to attend one 30-hour session.
Please be aware you must complete an entire 30 hour training session and have all background checks returned favorable to be sworn in as an advocate. You must be at least 21 years of age and be able to pass an extensive reference, Child Protective Services, sex offender registry and criminal background checks before becoming a CASA volunteer. You may not be a current foster parent or be in the process of adopting a child from Child Protective Services. If an attorney, you may not concurrently be appointed to any cases involving Child Protective Services in El Paso County.
The pre-service training classes are a part of the screening process, and that acceptance to participate in training does not guarantee that you will be sworn in as a CASA volunteer or that you will be assigned a case.
The training is a combination of in-person and online on your own training for a total of 30 hours. All training classes will take place virtually until further notice. You will need to attend all training classes during the same month.
* Please note there is a $25 fee associated with the background checks for becoming an Advocate. This fee will be collected after your pre-screening interview.
*Due to COVID-19, we are still holding trainings each month and all trainings will be held virtually in a Zoom Conference Call Environment. (Subject to change)
SEPTEMBER 2021 | Pre-Service Training Class
(Each prospective Advocate must attend and complete each virtual session listed below)
WEEK ONE (Online)
- Tuesday, September 14 5PM-8:30PM
- Thursday, September 16 5PM-8:30PM
- Saturday, September 18 5PM-8:30PM
WEEK TWO (Online)
- Tuesday, September 21 5PM-8:30PM
- Thursday, September 23 5PM-8:30PM
- Saturday, September 25 5PM-8:30PM
*Applications for this class need to be submitted before August 30, 2021
To Become a CASA Volunteer Means You Are:
- Willing to commit at least 18 months of your time (on average, volunteers spend 10-15 hours a month on their case);
- Able to effectively communicate orally and in writing;
- Willing to participate in an in-depth training program;
- Able to pass criminal and CPS history background checks; and
- Over age 21
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A CASA is a Court Appointed Special Advocate volunteer who works with abused and neglected children in the court system.
When children are removed from their home due to abuse or neglect, the judge will appoint one of our volunteers, CASAs, to be that child’s advocate and help determine what is in the best interest of the child. As an objective party, the CASA functions as the child’s voice as they go through the court system.
CASA volunteers get to know the child and offer a consistent, stable presence in the child’s life during a difficult time. They speak to everyone involved in the child’s life, including their families, teachers, attorneys, social workers, therapist, psychiatrists and others. Among other things, CASA volunteers research thecase, create a plan for advocacy and make recommendations to the court. All of this information helps the court make informed decisions as to what is in the best interest of the child.
Being a CASA volunteer does not require any special education or background. It requires participation in our training program and the desire to help abused and neglected children find safe, permanent homes.
After completing a 30-hour training class provided by CASA of El Paso and being assigned to a case, Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASAs) begin visiting the child regularly. Volunteer Advocates work closely with, but independent of, Child Protective Services (CPS) and attorneys.
The volunteer Advocate talks with the child, parents, family members, school officials, health providers and others who are knowledgeable about the child’s history. The volunteer Advocate then provides the judge with a carefully researched background of the child to help the court make a sound decision about the child’s future.
The volunteer Advocate makes a recommendation to the court for permanent placement, stating whether it is in the best interest of the child to live with the parent(s), live with relatives, remain in foster care, or be available for permanent adoption.