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Washington CASA Association is a network of 10 local programs in Washington state serving 12 counties. Through our valued membership with National CASA/GAL, we belong to a network of 950 community-based programs nationwide, that recruit, screen, train, and support court-appointed special advocate (CASA) and guardian ad litem (GAL) volunteers. Those advocates are volunteers, just like you, who stand up and speak out to help children experiencing abuse and neglect.


CASA/GAL Volunteers make a life-changing difference

Local CASA/GAL Programs make a life changing difference for children and youth in Washington.

For a child who has experienced neglect or abuse, having a caring CASA Volunteer to advocate for them can make a life changing difference. 

 

How CASA Volunteers Help

Children who have experienced abuse or neglect are involved with multiple systems—the court system, the child welfare system, the health care system, and the school system. CASA volunteers  help connect the dots between these systems to ensure that information is shared, when appropriate, to get the best possible outcomes for children and youth.

During the school year  CASA volunteers advocate for children to ensure they have access to the educational resources needed.


Call to Action

If you would like to support the children, youth and families, learn how you can become a CASA/GAL volunteer here.

Latest News

Leading child advocacy organization is celebrating 40 years of impact

Leading child advocacy organization is celebrating 40 years of impact

Leading child advocacy organization is celebrating 40 years of impact

Leading child advocacy organization is celebrating 40 years of impact

Local CASA/GAL programs across the country are galvanizing support nationwide to participate in this virtual unifying event, in support of children and families in the child welfare system.

Local CASA/GAL programs across the country are galvanizing support nationwide to participate in this virtual unifying event, in support of children and families in the child welfare system.

This brief presents findings from an exploratory impact evaluation of the New York City Performance Partnership Pilot (P3) program, which enhanced youth workforce services for young parents. We find that after leaving the program, NYC P3 enrollees had better outcomes than the comparison group in their occupational training participation rate, participation in other education and job-oriented services, high school equivalency credential attainment, and education/training enrollment and credential attainment. On average, NYC P3 participants earned high school equivalency credentials nearly four months sooner than comparison group members. We do not find significant impacts on employment or earnings. The brief concludes with recommendations for policy and practice.

Child care subsidies and other safety net programs are crucial for the well-being of families with low incomes, including parents’ economic stability and children’s development. But research has shown that policies and practices in the child care subsidy system can prevent families from accessing and keeping child care benefits that ensure their children receive care in stable, quality settings.

This fact sheet pulls out lessons from previous research on seven ways states can make child care more accessible and equitable for families and more efficient for agencies: (1) examine customer service flexibility, quality, and efficiency; (2) simplify application, reporting, and verification requirements; (3) change eligibility thresholds; (4) talk with parents, providers, and caseworkers to identify barriers to subsidy access and retention; (5) improve coordination across programs; (6) align and integrate policies and systems across programs; and (7) build data, information, and reporting capacity.

Millions of working parents qualify for food, medical, and child care assistance that can help them support their families. When parents receive these crucial supports, they are better able to stabilize their lives, advance their careers, and raise their children. But many eligible families do not receive the help they need, partly because of barriers in cumbersome state safety net benefit systems.

This fact sheet highlights lessons from previous research on how states can streamline their technology systems, policies, and business processes—and prioritize the customer’s point of view—to improve the customer experience, advance equity by expanding access to supports, and reduce programs’ administrative burden on states.

This report summarizes the latest decennial census data for the greater Washington, DC, (Greater DC) region, including the District of Columbia’s eight wards and 24 cities and counties in Maryland, Virginia, and West Virginia. The region grew from 5.6 to 6.4 million people between 2010 and 2020, an increase of 13.0 percent. Since 2000, the adult share of the region’s population has slowly increased while the share of children has decreased. The Greater DC region became more racially and ethnically diverse over the past decade, with large increases in both the Hispanic/Latinx and non-Hispanic/Latinx Asian and Pacific Islander populations. The District experienced the fourth-largest decade of population growth in its history, but the Black population continued a 50-year decline. The non-Hispanic/Latinx Black population became the largest group overall in the region’s five Maryland counties, surpassing the non-Hispanic/Latinx white population, with even larger growth for the Hispanic/Latinx population. Growth over the past decade in the Virginia counties and cities was driven largely by increases in the non-Hispanic/Latinx Asian and Pacific Islander populations and Hispanic/Latinx populations.

The report appendices include charts showing population changes for adults, children, and racial and ethnic groups for the District’s wards and the Maryland, Virginia, and West Virginia jurisdictions in the Greater DC region.

This technical report describes the steps taken to design and administer a survey of early educators employed in child care programs participating in Capital Quality, the District of Columbia’s quality rating and improvement system (QRIS). The survey collected data on a range of topics including the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on early educators’ employment and job earnings; perspectives toward Capital Quality; professional development and career plans; job qualifications, compensation, and employee benefits; work environment; physical and mental health; and demographics and financial well-being. The research team programmed the web survey in Qualtrics and administered it between February 24 and May 3, 2021. The report details survey response rates; the steps taken to clean, weight, and analyze the survey data; and characteristics of the study sample. A copy of the final survey instrument is appended to the report.

Research briefs presenting survey findings may be found on the project web page.

The District of Columbia rolled out a revamped quality rating and improvement system, Capital Quality, in 2016–18, in an effort to boost early care and education program quality. Although program directors are the primary target of Capital Quality’s technical assistance, understanding the experiences of early educators employed in their programs can yield insights on the system’s efficacy. We administered a survey of early educators working in Capital Quality–participating facilities in early 2021. We found that slightly more than half of respondents were aware of the new QRIS by name before receiving the survey. We also found that many, but not all, early educators had directly or indirectly interacted with their program’s quality facilitator, who supports program directors with designing and implementing a continuous quality improvement plan. Those familiar with components of Capital Quality generally felt positively about it and reported its benefits. These findings provide a picture of how well local early educators have received the new QRIS and opportunities for better informing and connecting with early educators who may be missing out.

This brief is a part of a series sharing findings from the 2021 DC Early Care and Education Workforce Survey. Research briefs and other study products may be found on the project web page. A technical report contains details on survey data collection methods, response rates, sampling weights, and characteristics of the survey sample, and includes a copy of the survey instrument.

Parents rely on a range of center- and home-based options for their children’s early care and education (ECE). Providers support children’s early learning and development, and give parents time and space to pursue their own school, work, and training opportunities. Despite these myriad benefits, many families face barriers to accessing care—particularly regulated ECE programs—due to limited supply and high costs. The COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated such barriers as the ECE field deals with staffing and financial challenges.

Home visitors can help families learn about the complex ECE system, connect them to services, and ease the enrollment process. They can support families in searching for and selecting an ECE provider that meets their needs.

This research brief summarizes the available research to address the following questions:

How does ECE benefit children and families?
What challenges do families face accessing ECE programs?
How can home visiting better refer and connect families to ECE services?
What are the implications for research and practice?

The authors discuss four types of resources that can help home visiting programs better support ECE referrals and connections.

This brief was developed for the National Home Visiting Resource Center and is available on its website. The NHVRC is led by James Bell Associates in partnership with the Urban Institute. Support is provided by the Heising-Simons Foundation and previously from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.

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