The program goals and objectives of CASA are to assist children in the foster care system with their social, mental and physical health as well as any educational needs they might have could be assessed. According to the article, Attachment, Development and Mental Health in Abused and Neglected Preschool Children in Foster Care: a Meta Analysis, abused and neglected children, such as the children who end up in foster care, are often cognitively impaired (Vasileva & Petermann, 2018). In particular, they show lower IQ scores, academic underachievement, and deficits in the areas of attention, language, memory, and executive functions. Abuse and neglect of children are also associated with mental health problems such as post-traumatic stress disorder, acute stress disorder, reactive attachment disorder, and disinhibited social engagement disorder (Vasileva & Petermann, 2018). It has been shown that negative and traumatic experiences in early childhood are associated with anxiety disorders, depression, antisocial behavior, and substance use in adolescence and adulthood (Vasileva & Petermann, 2018). In the article, Mental and Physical Health of Children in Foster Care, it was shown that children in foster care are a vulnerable population; they are typically in poor health, partially as a result of their early life circumstances (Turney & Wildeman 2016).
Compared to children who did not experience any abuse or neglect and who were not in the foster care system, children placed in foster care were twice as likely to have learning disabilities, developmental delays , asthma, obesity, and speech problems (Turney & Wildeman 2016). They were 3 times as likely to have ADD/ADHD, hearing problems, and vision problems; 5 times as likely to have anxiety; 6 times as likely to have behavioral problems; and 7 times as likely to have depression (Turney & Wildeman 2016).This is done by the CASA volunteers as they attend court dates, meet with the children and their providers, attend family meetings, and assist with educational plans by attending meetings at their schools. They advocate for the children and give them a voice that they would not have otherwise.
CASA is an accepted group by the foster care system and is known as a competent and active agency for children in foster care. They are funded by grants, agencies and private donors as well as money from fundraising activities. This funding has made the agency strong and able to assist and support children in foster care.