Youth Heartline’s Court Appointed Special Advocates begin training new volunteers this month to help children taken from their homes during times of legal trouble.

CASA coordinator Hilary Hart said in a press release that the volunteers undergo 30 hours of training in preparation to help kids navigate a “complex and challenging child welfare environment.”

Once they are trained, the volunteers basically function as watchdogs to ensure the children are properly cared for; the volunteers visit foster homes, make certain the children are placed in every programs they could benefit from and monitor the progress of their cases for at least one year.

Hart said the program has 24 volunteers at the moment, who monitor more than 50 children in Taos, Union and Colfax counties.

“We need determined, resilient and caring individuals who can advocate for children in a state with one of the lowest ratings for children’s health and welfare,” Hart said.

To become a CASA volunteer, call (575) 758-0106 or email casa@youthheartline.org.

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