How to Become a CASA/GAL Volunteer

How to Become a CASA/GAL Volunteer

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Want to do something special for yourself and for others? Consider becoming a Court Appointed Special Advocate “Guardian ad Litem” here in Kane County.

A special advocate is an everyday citizen, trained by CASA Kane County, who is appointed by the Juvenile Court judge to advocate for the safety and well-being of children who are victims of abuse and neglect.

CASA volunteers are appointed as Guardians ad Litem (GAL) for children under age 21 and act as the eyes and ears of the judge by documenting each child’s circumstances and making recommendations for services and permanency.  The ultimate goal of the CASA/GAL is to help ensure that every child lives in a safe and permanent home.  This could mean reunification with their parents, placement with relatives, or adoption by a loving family.

Learn about the requirements to become a CASA/GAL volunteer:

1) Read the requirements below
2) Listen to CASA Podcast #1 – General Information for Prospective CASA Volunteers
(scroll down the page to Podcast 1, and click on the “play” button).
3) Attend one of our General Information Meetings held in various locations in the Kane County
community.  Please Click here to view the schedule of upcoming meetings.

What are the requirements to be a CASA/GAL?

  • Demonstrates emotional maturity
  • Is objective and flexible
  • Exhibits self assurance and assertiveness
  • Has the ability to make decisions and set goals
  • Is willing to commit to the program for a minimum of 24 months
  • Demonstrates the ability to write and speak clearly and concisely


  • Age 21 or older
  • Attend a General Information Meeting (GIM)
  • Submit a complete application and references
  • Pass DCFS and criminal background checks, including fingerprinting
  • Participation in pre-training interview
  • Attend 40 hours of training (provided by CASA Kane County)
  • Accept the assignment of the case as agreed upon between the volunteer and the CASA Kane County staff Advocate Supervisor:
    • Read and review all relevant records pertaining to the case
    • Meet with the assigned Advocate Supervisor and experienced CASA/GAL mentor to plan case strategy
    • Interview all principals of the case
    • Maintain complete written records of the case
    • Continue contact with the child(ren) at least monthly
    • Maintain all case information in strict confidence
    • Monitor and facilitate case progress through the court system
    • Prepare written reports for the court in a timely manner
    • Maintain contact with the Advocate Supervisor
    • Maintain contact with the appointed attorney
    • Attend all court hearings and assure that the best interests of the child are being represented at every stage of the process
    • Keep the staff Advocate Supervisor and mentor informed of case activity and progress on a monthly basis
    • Pursue professional development in the areas of child welfare, family issues, and related topics
    • Participate in 12 hours of continuing education (in-service) per year
    • Accept, adhere to and support philosophies and policies of CASA Kane County

Note: The CASA/GAL works independently yet cooperatively with the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS) and their contracted agencies.