Talking Solutions

Sundays 6:30am - 7:00am

The CASA program is looking for volunteers in the Las Vegas community to help with our local foster kids.

CASA is the Court Appointed Special Advocate Program through the Eighth Judicial District Court in Las Vegas, Nevada. Presided over by Judge Margaret Pickard, it was established in Las Vegas in 1980 with the support of the women in the Junior League of Las Vegas.

Since its inception, CASA has grown to have over 350 trained volunteers. Annually, these volunteers help represent nearly 1000 abused and neglected children. They are appointed to help protect children in the welfare system, and advocate for what is in their best interest.

Oftentimes in court hearings for the children in foster care, the child’s voice isn’t heard. A CASA provides that voice for the child. These volunteers also engage in things like parent-teacher conferences or going to a sporting event to support the child. Any way that the child needs a mentor, a CASA is there to be that for them when their foster parents can’t be.

Another very vital role of a CASA is to be a consistent figure in a child’s life. Especially a child who repeatedly comes back into the foster care system. There are over 3000 children in the foster care system just in Clark County. And 2600 of them still need this advocate to be their voice.

Training for a new CASA involves 30 hours of training that is provided by the court system. It covers mental health and drug issues, as well as trauma preparedness. After training graduation, the volunteer will represent their appointed foster child(ren) in court. A 2 year commitment is asked of a new volunteer. Volunteers must be at least 21 years old.

Judge Pickard joined Wendy Rush on Talking Solutions to discuss the need for volunteers and how the community can get involved.

The original air date of this interview was May 28, 2023.

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