Guardian Ad Litem (GAL)

A CASA Volunteer is a trained and committed adult who is appointed by a judge to serve on cases of child abuse, neglect, and/or dependency. CASA/GALs thoroughly research a child’s case and advocate on behalf of their best interests in court. The CASA/GAL ensures that the child doesn’t get lost in the overburdened legal and social service system or languish in an inappropriate out-of-home placement.

A CASA Volunteer:

  • Must be at least 21 years of age
  • Must successfully pass a screening process and background check
  • Receives 40 hours of initial training
  • Must attend 12 hours of in-service training each year
  • Serves an average of 5-10 hours per month
  • Serves on at least one case per year
  • Conducts an independent investigation on behalf of each child involved in the case
  • Consults with CASA staff attorneys regarding each case
  • Submits contact logs, monthly updates, and court reports to the CASA office
  • Attends all pertinent hearings, reviews, or meetings for each case
  • Makes a two-year volunteer commitment

“Being a CASA/GAL has been the most rewarding volunteer work Ive done. For that reason, Ive been a volunteer with CASA of Franklin County for the past several years. I love advocating for the most vulnerable members of our society. Its my privilege to be their voice.”
-Cynthia, CASA Volunteer since 1999

“Being a CASA Volunteer is truly a rewarding experience. I am responsible for representing the best interests of children while working with the family, other individuals, and related human services organizations. I continue to grow and learn from interactions and relationships with children that are in need of guidance and direction during a difficult time in their life. I have the opportunity to make a difference.”
-James, CASA Volunteer since 2003

Take the next step by completing the volunteer application below.  If you have questions, please email Suzanne Barker, Esq., sbarker@casacolumbus.org.

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