CASA of Grant County is part of a national volunteer movement that began in 1977, when a Seattle judge conceived the idea of using trained community volunteers to speak for the best interests of abused and neglected children in court. These Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) provided him with the detailed information he needed to safeguard the children’s best interests and ensure that they were placed in safe, permanent homes as quickly as possible. The program was so successful that it was replicated around the nation. The National CASA Association was founded in 1982 and provides technical assistance and national leadership to local programs across the country. The CASA concept is endorsed by the U.S. Department ofJustice, Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention, the American Bar Association, National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges, and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Administration on Children and Families.
Today, there is a network of over 950 CASA programs in 49 states and more than 70,900 trained volunteer advocates nationwide. In 2015, in Grant County 43 CASA volunteers contributed over 9350 hours advocating for the best interests of 345 children.