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CASA First Volunteer Training

Local organization CASA First will be holding training for volunteers next month.

Program Support Specialist, Grace Korthuis, explains their services.

“Casa Court Appointed special advocates, this is our central program. It is for children and youth in the foster care system. They have a volunteer advocate who undergoes extensive training, the same training as our Abrigo Advocates. This person is with the child throughout the court process; writing reports to the judge, helping determine the best future placement for the child, as well as guiding them along the way, helping them access resources, and being a stable kind presence in their lives during a time of turmoil.”

Korthuis explains the Abrigo program at Casa First.

“Abrigo Advocates is a newer program with CASA First. It originated because we were seeing a need in the community with children aging out of the foster care system when they turn 18 and we were seeing a gap when they still would need that advocacy. We didn't feel like the age cut off was enough of a reason to not be able to provide that.

Korthuis said this is a great time to get involved.

“Now is a really great time to get involved as a volunteer with CASA First. We really are in need of Court Appointed Special Advocates and Abrigo Advocates right now. The child welfare system in Northern New Mexico is genuinely in a moment of crisis and these kids really need your help and support from the community at this time.”

Korthuis has the schedule for the next training program.

“Our next volunteer training begins on May 6th. It will be May 6th, 13th, 20th, 30th and June 6th from 9am - 12:30pm every time. And we do ask that everyone sign-up by late April. We really encourage anyone who’s interested to reach out and just ask questions. You can contact info@casafirst.org you can inquire via our website casafirst.org and you can give our office a call at (505) 820-5100”

Shantar Baxter Clinton is the hourly News Reporter for KSFR. He’s earned an Associates of the Arts from Bard College at Simons Rock and a Bachelors in journalism with a minor in anthropology from the University of Maine.