There are very specific requirements to becoming a CASA volunteer (our CASAs are appointed Guardian ad Litems). Unlike some other volunteer opportunities, CASA volunteers go through a thorough screening and training process and require a significant time commitment. We understand that it might not be for everyone and we want to help you decide if our program is a good match for you. Please take a moment to answer for yourself, the following questions. Remember that volunteering is a personal choice and it is important that you find a place to volunteer that best matches your skills and availability.
1. Often people with good intentions are just too busy to volunteer. CASA volunteers are asked to commit to 30 hours of initial training and 12 hours of on-going training throughout the year. Once accepted and trained, CASAs are assigned a case and required to have some flexibility during daytime hours to make bi-monthly visits and phone calls (approximately 10-15 hours per month). CASAs are asked to make an initial two year commitment, as cases can be assigned for a minimum of 18 months.
Do you have time in your life now for this kind of commitment?
2. Our cases require CASAs to travel to a variety of Boston neighborhoods. You don’t need to have a vehicle, as long as you are comfortable using the MBTA system.
Have you considered if you are able to travel to perform your volunteer work?
3. We are looking for volunteers who possess certain skills/characteristics. Having these skills/characteristics will make for a more successful volunteer experience.
Do you consider yourself….
- A direct communicator?
- More comfortable working as part of a team, as opposed to working autonomously?
- Able to handle challenging personalities with diplomacy and tact?
- Able to take initiative, while also accepting of feedback?
4. Volunteering with CASA means that you will be working with people of different ages, socioeconomic, cultural, racial, ethnic, religious, and educational backgrounds. You may also be traveling to a variety of neighborhoods in the Boston Metro Area.
Are you comfortable with this?
5. We value the unique skills and experience of each of our volunteers. As a volunteer, you will be encouraged to bring your skills and experience to your position. However, there are also policies and practices in place to guide you and to ensure that we are providing quality services to our clients. From time to time, your personal beliefs may differ from the standards you are expected to follow. In these cases:
Are you able to keep your personal & professional beliefs separate from your role as a CASA volunteer?
Thank you for taking the time to complete this self-assessment. If you answered yes to these five questions, we encourage you to attend one of our open houses and complete the volunteer application.
If you decide that our organization may not the best fit for you, you can contact us at 617-780-4055 with your questions or visit www.volunteermatch.org or www.idealist.org to view listings of other volunteer opportunities in your area.