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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Child Abuse Prevention, Children & Youth, Children & Youth Services, Crime & Law, Domestic Violence, Foster Care, Youth Development

Mission: The mission of Child Advocates is to provide stability and hope to children who have experienced abuse and neglect by being a powerful voice in their lives.

Results: In FY 2015, Child Advocates recruited, trained and supported 575 CASA volunteers to work one-on-one with 735 children in the Santa Clara County foster care system. Over the past 30 years, the agency has served more than 15,000 children in the foster care system with a CASA. Child Advocates’ goal to provide all of the county’s foster children with a CASA is based on the fact that foster children with CASAs achieve greater outcomes than those without. Last year, 93% of Child Advocates’ youth completed their high school requirements, compared to fewer than 50% of foster children nationwide; and, 73% of Child Advocates’ children ages 3 to 5 were enrolled in pre-school, compared to just 35% of all 3 to 5 year old Santa Clara County foster children.

Target demographics: We work with community volunteers to help children who have been placed in the foster care system due to abuse, neglect, and/or abandonment.

Direct beneficiaries per year: 735 children in the foster care system by recruiting, training and supporting 575 CASA volunteers.

Geographic areas served: Santa Clara County

Programs: Child Advocates make a lifelong difference for children who have experienced abuse and neglect by serving as friends, mentors and Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASAs). In response to the needs of children in our community Child Advocates has developed innovative programs serving children birth to five, preteens and youth preparing to emancipate from the foster care system. In addition, we have launched two programs for children whose parents are recovering from substance abuse and foster children who are struggling in school.

Community Stories

19 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

It's been such a privilege volunteering as a CASA for SV child advocates. I greatly enjoy time with my two kids. They are amazing kids. And I get all the suppport I need from the staff!

2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I have been a CASA for 7 years, and have worked with a variety of children, ages 2 to 17. I am still actively working with 4 of them,and have loved seeing them blossom. The support we get as advocates enables us to work with the children, and help them achieve things they never thought possible. Foster Youth need a positive, stable adult in their lives, and CASA's provide that. It is amazing what time and love can do for a child!! Please join us!!

2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I've been a CASA for two years and advocated for seven girls, ranging from 3 to 18 years old. The organization is well run, will provide you with support all along the way and will give you plenty of opportunity for continuing education. I believe in what we do to support children in Foster Care and highly recommend Child Advocates if you would like to give some of yourself to positively affect a child in need.

2 Dawn162

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I became a CASA over 5 and half years ago. I have advocated for six different cases and still have 5 active cases. My youths range in age from 17 years old to 2 years old. They all have different needs, different personalities, and do need to have that consistent adult in their lives. I am truly blessing to be part of their lives they way that I am.

2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Child Advocates of Silicon Valley is AMAZING!! Great people, great mission, great work! The training is ongoing so you never feel alone, the need is HUGE, and the kids are well worth your time.

As you learn more and more about the dependency system, you also realize - with a huge sigh of relief - that the systems partners (Judges, attorneys, etc.) really do care about these kids and want what's best for them. It's not always stated up front, but the more you listen the more you can see the compassion at work.

If you're looking for a way to jump into the deep end of volunteering, this is it! Come join us!

2 Tania8

Volunteer

Rating: 5

CASA is an amazing organization! Working with foster youth has been incredibly rewarding and educational. CASA is very well organized, communicative, supportive and provides many resources to help advocates as they navigate the dependency system. My supervisor is always available to help and gives me great advice when I need it.
Working with my youth has been wonderful. I've heard people say over and over again that they could never be a CASA because it's too sad or difficult. My experience has been the exact opposite. While there are occasional moments of sadness and frustration, the majority of the time I spend with my youth is fun and uplifting.

2 MariLyn71

Volunteer

Rating: 5

If you can imagine, there are children who only want some attention because they have been neglected or abused, then imagine they have to sit in court wondering what's happening, why it's happening and feeling helpless to affect the outcome. This is the life of a child in dependency, afraid, insecure, uncertain and often alone with those feelings. A CASA's (Court Appointed Special Advocates) relationship often has a life long impact and can change the outcomes of these most vulnerable children. Being a CASA has helped me understand the plight of these children and driven me to find ways to help. The best part of working with these children is that you can see impact in progress. Being a CASA can change your life one child at a time.

2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I consider my volunteer time valuable, so I don't like to waste time doing things that don't matter. That is why I work with Child Advocates of Silicon Valley. They serve an population of children who are going through probably the hardest time of their lives as foster kids, and it's a privilege to come along side the kids to encourage them and support them, and it does make a difference to the kids. The staff at CASV are all very professional, helpful, and encouraging.

2

Volunteer

Rating: 5

I first heard about Child Advocates in 1986. It took me until 1998 to contact the organization, as I thought I was too busy with work. Once I completed the training and began working with my first child, I was hooked. There is no more rewarding feeling than helping others, especially a child. Seeing them smile, gain confidence and a belief in themselves is tremendous. Spending time with my CASA child is a highpoint each week. Knowing that they are better able to face life's challenges and become a healthy adult due, in part, to the support received from me and the CASA agency is incredibly satisfying. Just wish I had started this journey earlier, as it has added such richness to my life.

1

Volunteer

Rating: 5

Perhaps one of the most well run and truly life changing organizations. I've been involved with Child Advocates, in different capacities, for many years. As a CASA I see first hand how being a steady, consistent presence in the life of a foster child can make a huge difference. Their vetting process, training, and continued support (from staff and peers) provide an amazing base for a volunteer to go forward and help these kids. The staff are there because they truly care and will provide guidance and knowledge. Is it always easy? No. But if you want to step up and be a part of positive change for many of our foster kids and youth, then it will be a rewarding experience.