Where do I send my volunteer application?
How are volunteers screened? Mail them to 2727 W. 2nd Street, Suite 410, Hastings, NE 68901. If you have any more questions please contact the office at 402-463-1030.
Pursuant to National CASA Local Program Standards, all staff and volunteers are required to pass an application and screening process that includes a check of national and state criminal records, state child protective services and sex offender registries. A personal interview and reference check is also required. Board members are required to pass the same background checks as a CASA volunteer. How are they trained?
National CASA Local Program Standards require all member programs to provide a minimum of 30 hours of pre-service training for new volunteers. These trainings often utilize the National CASA Volunteer Training Curriculum, a thorough collection of information vital to working within the juvenile court system and understanding the complexities of the social service system as well as the dynamics of child abuse and neglect. In 2012 National CASA introduced a flex-training program option that local programs can offer. Participants in the flex-learning training complete part of the pre-service training online and part of the training in person. Volunteers are also required to complete at least 12 hours of ongoing training per year to stay current on information vital to their roles. Am I at risk volunteering?
In the several years 20+ years of CASA of South Central Nebraska's existence, there have been no issues with the safety of the volunteers, and all the volunteers are trained to handle situations with families and friends. Also, the staff of the CASA of SCNE office is always available to assistance. Can the children come home with me?
Although creating relationships and getting to know the children you work with as a volunteer, bringing the children to your home is not allowed. There are several other ways you can build a relationship with the children, which are gone over in the training sessions and the staff of CASA of South Central NE is always willing to help with ideas. What is the role of a volunteer?
CASA volunteers are appointed by judges to advocate for the best interests of abused and neglected children in court and other settings. The primary responsibilities of a CASA volunteer are to: Gather information: Review documents and records, interview the children, family members and professionals in their lives.
Document findings: Provide written reports at court hearings.
Appear in court: Advocate for the child's best interests and provide testimony when necessary.
Explain what is going on: Help the child understand the court proceedings.
"Be the glue": Seek cooperative solutions among individuals and organizations involved in the children's lives. As one volunteer said: Be the glue that connects the pieces in a complicated child welfare system.
Recommend services: Ensure that the children and their family are receiving appropriate services and advocate for those that are not immediately available. Bring concerns about the child's health, education, mental health, etc. to the appropriate professionals.
Monitor case plans and court orders: Check to see that plans are being followed and mandated review hearings are being held. Keep the court informed: Update the court on developments with agencies and family members. Ensure that appropriate motions are filed on behalf of the child so the court knows about any changes in the child's situation. What can I donate?
The most obvious answer is any level of a monetary gift is extremely helpful in reaching more abused and neglected children. Gently used or new toys are, also, always appreciated. However, please call the CASA of South Central NE office and they will be able to give you specific needs of the organization. Where do I send donations?
All donations can be sent or dropped off at 2727 West 2nd Street, Suite 410 Hastings, NE 68901 (in the Landmark Center on the west side of town).
Our mission
The mission of CASA of South Central Nebraska is to provide trained, court appointed, community volunteers to advocate for a quick, safe, permanent home for all abused and neglected children in Adams, Clay, Nuckolls and Webster counties.
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