Recognizing the Challenges of Youth Mentoring
Posted on: February 24, 2015 by Care Providers Insurance
One of the most commonly known youth mentoring organizations in America is CASA or Court Appointed Special Advocates for children. In addition to serving on a national level, there are CASA facilities in cities nationwide, all of which require specialized Youth Mentoring Insurance or CASA Insurance Policies to protect against the various risks they face in the course of their business.
Youth mentoring, especially at the level that CASA serves, certainly does not come without risks. CASA volunteers are really so much more than mentors; they serve as a voice and an advocate for children who have been neglected and/or abused, in courtroom settings. Volunteers are given numerous tasks; including offering judges critical information they will need to ensure that each child’s rights and needs are being attended to while in the foster care system.
One of the top concerns many volunteers have in this regards is interaction with the parents of the child they are currently on a case with. According to CASA’s website, there have in fact been times where parents see the CASA volunteer as a threat to the return of their child, as CASA volunteers regularly partner with Child Protective Services (CPS). While the goals and values of CPS are always in the best interest of the child, a negative stigma has developed around them over the years.
Another potential scenario that raises risks is the parents of the child not allowing them to see their CASA volunteer. This is usually because the parent doesn’t understand the role of a CASA on a case, and can usually be resolved by the volunteer explaining what their duties and responsibilities are, and offer them a copy of the court order. In the worst case scenario, a volunteer will have to involve their coordinator, but certainly animosity can arise during this process.
The best thing your local CASA chapter client can do to potentially reduce risks is ensure that volunteers are very clear on what their role is, what is required of them and what their restrictions are, and always provide resources to CASA volunteers in case they have any unanswered questions.
At Care Provider Insurance Services, we understand the unique risks faced by those who do charity work, especially in the youth sector. Please contact us today at (855) 790-7379 for more information about our Insurance Programs for Non Profits and more.