New Mexico Kids Matter (formerly Albuquerque CASA)
To provide expressly trained volunteers to advocate in the best interests of children who have been removed from the home due to abuse and neglect, in all phases of the Children's Court System.
New Mexico Kids Matter (formerly Albuquerque CASA) is an organization that believes every child who has been abused or neglected deserves to have a dedicated advocate speaking up for their best interest in court, at school and in our community. To accomplish this we educate and empower community members to advocate for children.
Through these programs, our volunteers are making a difference:* CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocates Rule 10-164) is part of a system created to protect children. When the State steps in to protect a child's safety, a judge appoints a trained CASA volunteer to make independent and informed recommendations to the court. CASA is the only child advocacy group working in the court system that provides a caring and consistent adult focused on the well-being of a single child.
* Educational Advocacy: This initiative aims to enhance the educational achievements of children in foster care by encouraging, improving, and coordinating the combined efforts of the school, resource parent, and child; it ensures that children in foster care are receiving essential educational services. Educational Advocates receive protocol training so they can work effectively with teachers and administrative personnel in schools, and understand specific educational needs of individual children based on age, ability and experience. Educational Advocates review educational records and case histories, and ensure proper individualized services are being provided for children in foster care.
* Compassionate Canines: Courthouse dogs specialize in assisting children with emotional trauma due to abuse and or neglect. Courthouse dogs provide a calming presence and promote justice with compassion.