CASA Volunteer Info

In Douglas County, there are over 1,300 children in foster care. Our vision is to provide a CASA for every child who needs one, and that means we need over 200 more citizens from our community to advocate for these children.

No special background or education is required to become a CASA volunteer. We encourage people from all cultures and professions, and of all ethnic and educational backgrounds to volunteer.

If you want to learn more before applying to become an advocate, please contact Deanna Wagner, Recruitment Coordinator, at dwagner@casaomaha.org or 402-932-5683 ext. 105, or attend an Information Session.

Information Sessions are held the second Wednesday of each month at both noon and 5:30 PM at the CASA Office/Training Center, 2412 St. Mary’s Avenue.  

The session will last 30 to 60 minutes.

No need to make a reservation, just come!

A Court Appointed Special Advocate, CASA, is a trained volunteer, sworn in as an Officer of the Court and appointed to a specific case by a Judge. A CASA is the voice for abused and neglected children who are in foster care. Working in conjunction with case professionals and attorneys, a CASA advocates for the best interest of a child. A CASA meets with the child at least monthly and attends monthly team meetings with case professionals, parents and/or foster parents. A CASA will meet with teachers, daycare providers, medical and mental health providers, and other service providers as needed. At least every six months, a CASA will write a court report with recommendations to the court. A CASA will also attend periodic court hearings.

Essential Volunteer Duties:

  • Meet with the child on a consistent basis, a minimum of one time per month.
  • Attend meetings with case professionals, parents and/or foster parents.
  • Establish and maintain contact with schools, therapists, medical professionals, and other professionals involved in the child’s life.
  • Monitor court ordered services to ensure effectiveness, and advocate for additional services as needed.
  • Document observations, facts and circumstances of the child’s situation in a written court report including recommendations for placement, services, and permanency.
  • Maintain complete records of contacts, hours, and mileage.
  • Attend court hearings.

Participation and/or Support:

  • CASA Holiday Party in December and the Volunteer Recognition Event in April.
  • Omaha Gives in May and the Superhero Run in July.

Training:

  • Complete 30 hours of pre-service training and 2 hours of court observation.
  • Complete 12 hours of continuing education training annually.

Minimum Requirements:

  • Able to commit to a minimum of 2 years.
  • Willing to donate 8 to 10 hours per month.
  • Able to commit to training hours as noted above.
  • Attend court hearings or arrange for supervisor or peer coordinator attendance.
  • Able to maintain objectivity and professionalism in dealing with the child and all other parties involved.
  • Ability to maintain confidentiality.
  • Possess excellent verbal and written communication skills.
  • Possess a working knowledge of Microsoft Word and Email.
  • Must have reliable transportation.
  • Must be at least 21 years of age.
  • Must pass a background check, have a valid driver’s license/identification, valid auto insurance (if applicable), valid phone number, and have a permanent address.

Volunteer Now

The process to become an advocate is comprised of 5 steps:

1) Complete the online application.
The application will take approximately 30 minutes to complete. Be prepared to provide address history for the past 20 years, and three references (personal and/ or professional) and their email addresses.

2) Interview with CASA Recruitment staff.
Once the application is completed, CASA staff will contact you to schedule a 60 minute interview. Initial acceptance into the program will be determined at this interview. Please bring your driver’s license or state ID to the interview.

3) Successfully complete background checks.
CASA staff will initiate the background checks after initial acceptance into the program.

4) Attend and successfully complete CASA training.
CASA training takes place over five weeks. Each week, 3 hours of training is completed online prior to attending a 3 hour classroom session.

5) Attend a swearing-in ceremony at the Douglas County Juvenile Court.

Volunteer Now

An advocate receives 30 hours of training and attends 2 hours of court observation. CASA training is scheduled over a five week period and includes 3 hours of online training and 3 hours of in-person training each week. The in-person class is scheduled twice a week providing flexibility to choose either an evening class (Tuesday 5:30-8:30) or a daytime class (Thursday 1-4).  Training classes require 6 participants to schedule.

Volunteer Now

2017
February-15-March 7Tuesday 5:30-8:30 or Thursday 1-4
March 28-April 25Tuesday 5:30-8:30
May 16-June 13Tuesday 5:30-8:30 or Thursday 1-4
July 11-August 8Tuesday 5:30-8:30
August 22-September 19Tuesday 5:30-8:30 or Thursday 1-4
October 3-October 31Tuesday 5:30-8:30 or Thursday 1-4
November 14-December 12Tuesday 5:30-8:30