Our mission is to advocate for the best interests of the children involved in court proceedings in Hamilton County, Indiana Courts.
In Hamilton County, Indiana, when children are involved in court cases, the Judge may choose someone to look out for the child’s welfare. These people are called Guardian Ad Litem Advocates ("GAL volunteer" or "GALs" for short) or Court Appointed Special Advocates ("CASAs"). The GAL/CASA volunteers are the eyes and ears of the Court, going places where Judges cannot go. These volunteers act for the child in the courtroom, deal with social services, and help in cases of family crisis. Their goal is to protect the child’s safety and feelings and make sure the child lives in a good home where he or she will not be abused or neglected. Funding for the Hamilton County GAL/CASA Program is primarily by Hamilton County, with additional financial support from grants. In some cases, parties may be required to reimburse the GAL Program for services rendered. In all cases, the Court can require the parties to pay a user fee.
How We Make a Difference
Children who have experienced abuse or neglect fare better with a GAL/CASA volunteer by their side. Studies have shown these children are more likely to find a safe, permanent home and to succeed in school and are half as likely to re-enter the foster care system. Our volunteers help support early childhood development, enable school-aged children to succeed, and help older youth prepare for independence. Our advocates work to help each child reach a safe and stable forever home. For many children, their advocate will be the one constant in an otherwise chaotic life.