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CASA of Tarrant County

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Caitlyn Ussery

on 17 May 2018

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Transcript of CASA of Tarrant County

CASA of Tarrant County
About CASA
Founded in 1977 by Judge David Soukup in Seattle
Came to Tarrant Co. in 1983 by Judge Scott Moore
Maintains a highly respected reputation
Affiliate of Texas CASA and National CASA
Duties of a CASA
Gather information "Fact Finders"
Visit child in placement once per month
Observe parent visit once per month
Touch base with specific involved parties
Attend all court hearings
Ultimate goal: Gather information from every viewpoint, provide recommendations to the judge, and help find permanency for the child(ren)
Importance of CASA
Tarrant Co. is
in the state for child abuse and neglect cases in 2017
Harris Co: 6,551 with 1,787 removals
Dallas Co: 6,242 with 1,580 removals
Tarrant Co: 5,630 with 701 removals
in the state for child abuse/neglect related fatalities
A CASA has 1-2 cases, a Child Advocy Specialist, and more time and ability to fully understand and advocate for a child/children
CASA has an ongoing list of over 275 children waiting to be served; there is a huge need
The Role of a CASA
Child(ren) removed from thier home; life in flux
Needs often go unnoticed/unmet
A CASA provides consistency and stability in their otherwise unstable world
Minimum Qualifications
Cannot be a foster parent, employee of CPS, engaged in a custody dispute, or be involved in a foster child's life who has an active case
At least 21 years old
Pass fingerprint and background checks
Flexible daytime schedule
Fair and open minded
Total of 34 hours: 21 hours at CASA, 10 hours of homework, and 3 hours of court observation (CASA 101 class required FIRST)
All classes and pre-training requirements must be completed prior to graduation
Swear-in takes place after last session
12 hours of annual training
CASA of Tarrant County and its court-appointed volunteers advocate for the best interest of abused and neglected children.
Provide a CASA volunteer to every child who needs one.
Overburdened court and child welfare systems; children are at risk of falling through the cracks
CASA advocates for best interest
CASA is the only unpaid and unbiased party;
judges view CASA as a "friend of the court"
Speaking Up
Meet minimum qualifications
Complete CASA training in 3 months
Commit to a year with CASA
Submit application
References to complete survey
1 Relative, 1 Supervisor, and 2 Close Friends/Co-Workers
Complete an interview
Pay $26 fee
DFPS background check
Average monthly commitment of 12-15 hours per month
Mileage can be used as a tax write-off
Court hearings scheduled 2 weeks in advance (60d, 6m, 10m, 12m)
If you are unable to commit now, we have other volunteer opportunities
Time Commitment
Raising a voice against the unspeakable.
Why You Should Become A CASA
Welcome to CASA of Tarrant County
Information Session

April Bolden, LMSW
I am for the child...
Nominate a CASA
Volunteer at our events
Host an Information Session
Make your special event benefit CASA
Join the CASA of Tarrant County Wing Society
Help us grow!
Upcoming Events
casa kids on canvas
April 5 from 6:00pm-8:00pm
Upcoming Events
5th Annual Superhero Run
October 27, 2018 Levitt Pavilion
Children with a CASA Volunteer:
Are more likely to find a safe, permanent home
Have shorter stays in foster care
Do better in school
Receive more assistance
Are less likely to change placements
Are more likely to have a consistent, adult presence
Score better on protective factors:
Neighborhood resources, interested adults, sense of acceptance, controls against deviant behavior, models of conventional behavior, positive attitude towards the future, valuing achievement, ability to work with others and ability to work out conflicts
Full transcript