Frequently Asked Questions

How does a CASA volunteer investigate a case?

     In order to prepare a recommendation, the CASA volunteer talks with the parents, family members, social workers, school officials, health providers and others who are knowledgeable about the child's history. The CASA volunteer also reviews all records pertaining to the child – school, medical and caseworker reports, etc.

How does a CASA volunteer differ from a caseworker?

     Caseworkers are employed by state governments. They work on as many as 30 cases at a time and are frequently unable to conduct a comprehensive investigation of each. The CASA worker is a volunteer with more time and a smaller caseload – an average of 1-2 cases at a time. The CASA volunteer does not replace a caseworker on a case; he or she is an independent appointee of the Court. The CASA volunteer can thoroughly examine a child's case, has knowledge of community resources, and can make recommendations to the Court, independent of state agency restrictions.

Is there a "typical" CASA volunteer?

     CASA volunteers come from all walks of life, with a variety of professional, educational and ethnic backgrounds. Aside from their CASA volunteer work, 52% are employed in regular full-time jobs; 82% of the volunteers nationwide are women and 18% are men.

How much time does it require?

     Each case is different. A CASA volunteer usually spends more time conducting research and interviews prior to the first court appearance. Once the initial investigation is complete, volunteers can thoroughly examine a child's case, has knowledge of community resources, and can make recommendations to the Court, independent of state agency restrictions.

How long does a CASA volunteer remain involved with a case?

     York County CASA requires an 18 to 24 month commitment upon assignment of case. However, CASA strives to remain involved should the case continue beyond that point, until it is permanently resolved. One of the primary benefits of the CASA program is that, unlike other court principals who often rotate cases, the CASA volunteer is a consistent figure in the proceedings and provides continuity for a child.

What children are assigned CASA volunteers?

     Children from birth to 18 years of age who are victims of abuse and/or neglect and who have become wards of the court are assigned CASA volunteers.

Do lawyers, judges and social workers support CASA?

     Yes. Juvenile and family court judges implement the CASA program in their courtrooms and appoint volunteers. CASA has been endorsed by the American Bar Association, the National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges, and the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention of the U.S. Dept. of Justice.

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