CASA Volunteers show up no matter what, and in doing so, remind each child of their own tremendous potential and value.
Value of Donated Time
Children Served by CASA
Total Volunteer Hours
2022 Annual Impact
Denver Court Appointed Special Advocates – or Denver CASA – provides support and advocacy for children with an open case in family court. Since 1995, Denver CASA has partnered with Denver Juvenile Court to provide a critical voice for these survivors of trauma, loss, abuse and neglect.
CASA Volunteers, or CASAs, are dedicated community volunteers who are highly trained and supervised by professional staff, and appointed by family court judges to advocate for kids who find themselves navigating a complicated system at a tender age.
We advocate for permanency whenever possible, secure appropriate educational, mental and physical health services, and guide the court’s decisions towards more restorative solutions, whether through safely reunifying children with their family of origin or finding nurturing and stable kinship or foster care homes where children can thrive.
Child Advocates – Denver CASA advocates for the best interests of children who have experienced abuse or neglect by training diverse volunteers who create opportunities for children, youth and families to thrive.
Our vision is that all children, youth and families are thriving emotionally, mentally, and physically with lifelong connections to caring and responsible adults, a permanent home, and a safe and nurturing environment where they have a sense of belonging.
We nurture and cultivate meaningful relationships that contribute to stronger, safer and more supported communities.
We collaborate with our team, stakeholders, community members and other organizations to form strong working partnerships.
We seek to include people with diverse backgrounds, lived experiences, and viewpoints in all areas of our work and create a community where each person can feel their authentic selves, and their views and contributions are valued and integrated, thereby enriching the organization.
We act with empathy to understand and respect lived experiences of the children and families we serve and pursue equity and justice while acknowledging power structures and bias.
We continue to learn and grow as individuals and a team.
We practice honesty and show consistent and uncompromising adherence to strong moral and ethical principles.
Denver CASA continues to build a diverse and inclusive culture that encourages, supports, and celebrates the distinct voices of our employees, volunteers, board members and children served. We want every child, family member, staff and volunteer to feel valued and appreciated and bring their full authentic selves to our organization. We use the following definitions in our work:
Diversity refers to all of the ways in which people differ encompassing all the different characteristics that make an individual different from another. This includes but is not limited to race, ethnicity, gender, age, national origin, religion, disability, sexual orientation, socioeconomic status, education, marital status, language, and physical appearance.
Access, opportunity, and advancement for all, while at the same time identifying and reducing barriers that have prevented the full participation of some individuals or groups. The principle of equity acknowledges that there are historically underserved and underrepresented populations, and that a dynamic approach is needed to address the imbalance and promote opportunities for all.
The Act of creating environments in which any individual or group is welcomed, respected, supported and valued fully to bring their authentic selves and lived experiences to the organization. An inclusive and welcoming climate embraces differences and offers respect in words, actions and deeds.
Each person feels their authentic self, views and contributions are valued and integrated by the organization. A sense of belonging is a human need that may improve motivations, health and happiness enriching the experience of the individual, group, or organization.
The idea of a Court Appointed Special Advocate was originally started by Seattle Judge David W. Soukup in Seattle, Washington in 1977 who felt that children needed more support as they moved through the dependency and neglect system. As a judge, he did not think he had enough information to make decisions about the fate of children in dependency and neglect cases. He came up with the idea that a trained volunteer could speak up on behalf of children who had experienced abuse and neglect.
Since then, this idea of a CASA has expanded into 49 states, including the National CASA Association, located in Seattle. In 1995, Child Advocates – Denver CASA was founded. For over 25 years, Denver CASA has recruited and trained volunteers to serve in the 2nd Judicial District of Denver advocating for children and providing a stable, caring adult to help children through a difficult time.
As CASA youth look towards life after the foster system, the transition can be difficult. Navigating the foster system can be overwhelming for any youth and child, but making the transition to adulthood can be particularly challenging. In response, Denver CASA’s Older Youth program was created to support any goal-oriented youth between 14-21 years old that have had some interaction with the foster system. We strongly believe in meeting youth where they are, and working with them to gain the skills and confidence they need to transition to adult life.
Older Youth mentors are in a great position to provide valuable mentorship to older youth Mentors understand the importance of providing guidance and advice – especially in the complicated and confusing world of supportive services. By encouraging Older Youth to develop the skills needed to make the transition out of the foster system, our mentors can play a key role in promoting better outcomes throughout adulthood.