Mission & History
Staff & Board of Directors



“The juvenile court judges regularly state that the Advocate is the “eye and ears of the court.” But they are also my eyes and ears. I can’t imagine the juvenile court system without the dedicated and conscientious work of the CASA Advocates.”

Chantelle Porter
Guardian Ad Litem

Mission & History

Our Mission

The mission of DuPage County Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) is to recruit, train and support volunteer citizen advocates to effectively speak to the best interests of abused, neglected, dependent and vulnerable children in the DuPage County court system.

CASA’s vision is that every child deserves a safe, permanent, nurturing home.

Who We Are

The History of CASA
In 1977, a Seattle Superior Court Judge named David Soukup was concerned about trying to make decisions on behalf of abused and neglected children without enough information. He conceived the idea of appointing community volunteers to speak up for the best interests of children in court. He made a request for volunteers; 50 citizens responded, and that was the start of the CASA movement.

Today, there are 75,000 advocates serving in more than 950 state and local program offices nationwide. CASA programs across the country are known by several different names, including Guardian ad Litem, Child Advocates and Voices for Children.

While each CASA program is independent, the National CASA Association, located in Seattle, develops and maintains the volunteer curriculum, ensuring that the highest standards are kept.

CASA of DuPage County
CASA of DuPage County, Inc., was founded in April of 1993 when it entered into a formal agreement with the Eighteenth Judicial Circuit Court, DuPage County, Illinois. During its first year of operation, CASA of DuPage County, Inc. supported 15 volunteer advocates who were the voices for 33 abused and neglected children. By 2015, a total of 383 children benefited by having one of 133 volunteers as their CASA Advocate. Though CASA is a national organization, programs are set up by county. Illinois has 36 programs which serves 38 counties. State-wide, 43% of children in juvenile court have an advocate. However, every abused, neglected or dependent child in DuPage has an advocate; has a voice in court. DuPage County citizens know that Powerless Children Need Powerful Friends.

Non-Discrimination Statement

CASA of DuPage County does not discriminate on the basis race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, sexual orientation, gender identity or disability, in accordance with applicable federal and state laws. Moreover, it provides equal employment opportunity to all applicants and employees without regard to race, color, religion, sex, national origin, age, sexual orientation, gender identity or disability, in accordance with applicable federal and state laws.

 

Employees, volunteers, or individuals receiving services from CASA of DuPage County who believe that they have encountered discrimination may file a complaint with the Illinois Criminal Justice Information Authority (ICJIA), the Illinois Department of Human Rights (IDHR), the US Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) (for employees), and the U.S. Department of Justice Office for Civil Rights (OCR). ICJIA complaint forms can be found at ICJIA's website or by contacting the ICJIA’s Civil Rights Officer at 312-793-8550.  

Complaints filed with ICJIA may be filed via the web http://www.icjia.state.il.us/public/, mail (Civil Rights Officer, Illinois Criminal Justice Information Authority, 300 West Adams Street, Suite 200, Chicago, Illinois 60606), or email cja.civilrightsofficer@illinois.gov. The individual may also file a complaint directly with the OCR at the following address:  Office for Civil Rights; Office of Justice Programs; U.S. Department of Justice; 810 Seventh Street N.W.; Washington, DC 20531, or their local EEOC office. Complaints may also be filed with the IDHR: 100 W. Randolph Street, 10th Floor, Intake Unit, Chicago, IL 60601, (312) 814-6200 or (886) 740-3953 (TTY)