Court Appointed Special Advocates of Southeast Missouri will be training a new class of volunteers over the course of the next month.
Trained advocates have the power to change the lives of children in the 32nd Judicial Circuit, which includes Cape Girardeau, Bollinger and Perry counties. CASA volunteers get involved in the lives of children who are victims of abuse, neglect or abandonment and are appointed by judges to represent the best interests of children in court. CASA volunteers gather information from and about the individuals in the lives of children who may be removed from their homes.
CASA volunteers must be 21 years of age or older, undergo a criminal-background check, complete 30 hours of pre-service training and commit to working at least one case. Training and materials are provided without cost.
Spring training is from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Saturday and April 26; 6 to 8:30 p.m. April 28, May 1, 5, 8 and 13; and from 6 to 7 p.m. May 15.