For more than 30 years, the Guardian ad Litem Program has served as the region’s exclusive advocate for children in the court system. Guardian ad Litem is the extension of CASA in FL, and our volunteer Guardians ad Litem are court-appointed special advocates whose sole job is to serve as the voice of the child – a voice that is separate from the child’s family members, foster care providers, attorneys or social workers.
The GAL Program is committed to actively recruiting volunteers to provide support and advocacy for children in the child welfare system. Guardian ad Litem volunteers work within a team that includes a Child Advocate Manager and Best Interest Attorney. Their job is to make recommendations that serve the child’s best interests.
Volunteers become “the voice” for these children and make impactful recommendations that directly affect their future.
Guardians ad Litem make a profound impact on the children they serve and the communities these children call home. Children who have a Guardian ad Litem are:
- More likely to be adopted
- Half as likely to re-enter foster care
- Substantially less likely to spend time in long-term foster care
- More likely to have a plan for permanency
- More likely to perform well in school
Every child deserves a champion. Complete the volunteer form to learn more about how you can help change a child’s life.
Volunteers must be at least twenty-one (21) years old.
No, our volunteers come from all walks of life with different educational backgrounds and life experiences. You will receive specialized training that will prepare you to become a certified GAL.
Yes, all of our volunteers are subjected to a level 2 background check.
The children range in age from newborn to 18 years old.
Yes. You may choose your case by reviewing a selection of children who are waiting for their GAL volunteer.
The monthly average is 10-15 hours. It depends on what’s happening with your case as to how much time you will spend. You will visit your child monthly, report observations and attend court hearings. All other advocating and investigating depends on the situation of the case you’ve selected. Your Child Advocate Manager (CAM) will assist you.
You are not alone. We have a structured support system in place. Every case is worked as a team which consists of the GAL volunteer, Child Advocate Manager, and Best Interest Attorney. Working together, you share communications regarding the case. After you’ve completed our classroom training, you will be assigned a Child Advocate Manager, who will mentor and advise you on your case as needed. Your Best Interest Attorney will be available to consult when necessary and will handle all of the legal aspects of your case.