The CASA Story

It Was a Judge’s Idea

Inspiration came to Seattle juvenile court judge David W. Soukup in 1976.

Judge Soukup had insufficient information to make a life-changing decision for a 3-year-old girl who had suffered from child abuse.

That’s where the idea came from: These children, who had experienced abuse or neglect, needed trained volunteers speaking up in the courtroom for their best interests.

He put out a request for volunteers; 50 citizens responded.  And that was the start of the CASA movement. 

The History of CASA/GAL Movement

  • 1977: Judge Soukup starts the first CASA/GAL program in Seattle (King County), Washington.
  • 1977: A National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges committee endorses the program as a model for safeguarding a child’s rights to a safe and permanent family.
  • 1978: Judge John F. Mendoza of Nevada suggests the term “court-appointed special advocate” to designate the lay court-appointed volunteers.
  • 1982: The first Annual CASA Conference is held in Nevada, and participants vote to establish the National CASA Association.
  • 1982: The number of CASA/GAL programs reaches 88.
  • 1983: Twenty-nine states have CASA/GAL programs.
  • 1984: The National CASA Association forms in Seattle.
  • 1984: National CASA enters into its first cooperative agreement with the U.S. Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention, which remains our largest funder to date.
  • 1985: President Ronald Reagan presents National CASA with the President’s Volunteer Action Award.
  • 1985: 10,000 children served annually through 159 programs
  • 1987: 40,000 children served by 12,000 volunteers in 271 local programs and 44 states. The first CASA program in Maryland is started. 
  • 1988: Tribal courts first begin CASA programs through grants to five tribes.
  • 1989: National CASA becomes Kappa Alpha Theta Foundation’s national charity.
  • 1990: 72,000 children served by 17,000 volunteers in 412 program offices
  • 1991: The CASA program is first authorized in the Victims of Child Abuse Act.
  • 1995: 129,000 children served by 38,000 volunteers in 642 program offices
  • 1996: Congress amends the Child Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act to allow the required GAL to be an attorney or CASA volunteer.
  • 1997: The National Bar Association endorses CASA volunteer advocacy. Maryland CASA is incorporated. 
  • 2000: 174,000 children served by 47,000 volunteers in 900 program offices
  • 2003: National CASA’s partnership with Jewelers for Children, our largest private funder, begins. CASA of Caroline opens its doors. 
  • 2007: CASA network reaches 2 million children served since inception.
  • 2015: National CASA begins a partnership with Akerman LLP, a top law firm.
  • 2016: National CASA Association opens an office in Washington, D.C.

 

Ways You Can Help

Make a Financial Contribution:
You can make a difference in the lives of Caroline County children with a donation that will assist CASA of Caroline in providing advocates to children in need. 
  • Click on our "donation" link or send us a check. Monetary donations help cover the costs of recruiting and training volunteer advocates.  All gifts are tax-deductible.
  • Designate CASA of Caroline in your workplace giving. Don’t forget about matching funds programs and Maryland Charity Campaigns #1363. Please visit mdcharity.org to learn more. 
  • Honor a CASA advocate you know by making a gift in his or her honor. 
  • Make a planned gift through a bequest or life insurance gifts. 
Become a Corporate Partner

We are looking for like-minded businesses and organizations within the community to become partners.  Please visit our "Community Partners" page for more details and to see our current partners

Make an In-Kind Donation:
Cleaning out your home or office?  There are many things we could use in our CASA office!
  • Office supplies like copy paper, file folders, etc.
  • Non-perishable food and beverages to be used during trainings.
  • Gift cards for gas or restaurants that our CASA's could use during their visits with their child
  • Gift cards or items for the auction at our annual fundraiser.
Other Ways to Support:
  • Host an event such as a car wash, bake sale, etc. to benefit CASA of Caroline.
  • Shop AmazonSmile and designate CASA of Caroline as your charity of choice.
  • Invite us to come present to your group, organization or workplace.
  • Stay connected with us by signing up for our newsletter and e-mail updates. 

Get In Touch

8 + 5 =

Call

(410)-479-8301

Email

carolinecasa@verizon.net

Address

114 Market Street, Suite 100
Denton, MD 21629

Fax

(410) 479-8302