What Is Our Mission?
CASA is an independent, non-profit organization committed to speaking up for the best interests of abused and neglected children in Mercer and Burlington Counties. CASA works through trained community volunteers to insure that needed services and assistance are made available while helping to move children towards safe and permanent homes. CASA strives to improve the lives of those we serve by minimizing children’s time in the child welfare system and maximizing the probability of a permanent placement.
CASA volunteers are appointed by judges to watch over and advocate for abused and neglected children, to make sure they don’t get lost in the overburdened legal and social service system or languish in inappropriate group or foster homes. Volunteers stay with each case until it is closed and the child is placed in a safe, permanent home. For many abused children, their CASA volunteer will be the one constant adult presence in their lives.
Independent research has demonstrated that children with a CASA volunteer are substantially less likely to spend time in long-term foster care and less likely to reenter care.
Who Are the Children CASA Volunteers Help?
Judges appoint CASA volunteers to represent the best interests of children who have been removed from their homes due to abuse or neglect. Each year, more than 700,000 children experience foster care in this country. Because there are not enough CASA volunteers to represent all of the children in care, judges typically assign CASA volunteers to their most difficult cases.