Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) of Santa Barbara County is a local nonprofit that recruits, trains, and supports community volunteers to serve as advocates for children who have experienced abuse or neglect throughout Santa Barbara County. We believe every child deserves a voice.
When a child is removed from their home due to abuse or neglect, they enter a confusing world of court proceedings and competing interests— they have a lawyer, but that lawyer may have hundreds of other cases to deal with. The child’s social worker, likewise, has a full caseload and may only see the child once a month. The judge gets to know the case but sees the child infrequently, and in a courtroom setting.
That’s where CASA volunteers come in.
A CASA volunteer gets to know the child and the child’s situation. The volunteer sees the child every week, and regularly talks to the child’s teachers, parents, other family members, social workers, lawyer, and often therapists, in order to get a clear picture of what is going on—and then the volunteer advocates for that child’s best interests.
Children with a CASA volunteer have access to more services, and they are more likely to thrive. CASA volunteers make a real and lasting difference in the lives of the most vulnerable children in our community. To learn more about the impact of a CASA volunteer, click here.