The Illinois Association of Court Appointed Special Advocates believes strongly in the continuing education of both program staff and volunteers. Illinois CASA strives to deliver a monthly ongoing training program that helps to build and maintain a strong and consistent staff and volunteer base.
Beginning July 2019 Illinois CASA will host a monthly Director's Best Practice Series as well as a Trauma Webinar Series for CASA volunteers and staff. Topics such as SASS (Screening Assessment and Support Services), ACRs (Administrative Case Reviews), Diversity and Inclusion and the Volunteer, a Writing Workshop and understanding the Memorandum of Understanding are on the schedule through December 2019.
Upon completion of any of the in-service training opportunities on the CASA website, document your experience by completing the Illinois CASA In-Service Training Completion Form. You will automatically receive a copy of your responses, which you should then forward to your Local Program for its in-service training records. You should complete the form each time you complete a training opportunity.
We urge the local CASA program staff and volunteers to examine our Training Catalog and sign up early. Any questions or comments regarding the training can be directed to Kristen Bertrand, Director of Training, firstname.lastname@example.org.
This training is an introductory training on trauma. This training discusses the definition of trauma, explaining both acute and complex trauma. This training also describes how traumatic experience impacts brain development in children and how that effects them into adulthood. This training also explores the ACES (Adverse Childhood Experiences) study and how that has influenced the movement to become more trauma sensitive in working with children and families. At the conclusion of the training, there is a brief discussion on addressing secondary trauma as well as the importance of building resiliency in children and families who have experienced complex trauma.
Storytelling From My Perspecitve
Join Victor Feraru for this training session about the importance and power of story. Story telling is an essential component of societal growth and survival. It’s also an effective tool to inspire and save who would otherwise be voiceless.
Victor just passed the bar! He received his JD from SIU Law in Carbondale where he was named one of 20 top law students in the country by the National Jurist Magazine. Feraru’s work includes: the American Bar Association’s Law Student Division, as its social media assistant; extern for two U.S. District Court Judges; and for the Illinois State's Attorney's Office in Southern Illinois. Feraru is a member of the Illinois DCFS Children’s Justice Task Force. He was adopted as adult after living in over 40 foster homes, 3 group homes, imprisoned and homeless. Feraru was the 2008 winner of The Nation Magazine college writing contest with his piece "Transcending Trauma."
Legislation 101 for CASA Volunteers
Learn how and when to communicate with your State Representatives and Senators in Illinois. James McIntyre, Mission and Outreach Associate of Illinois CASA will share best practices for local CASA programs.
Diversity and Inclusion as a CASA volunteer
Listen as Mechiko White, Executive Director, CASA of Southwestern Illinois, informs CASA volunteers of understanding diversity and inclusion needs in local CASA programs throughout the State.
Building Roads to Resilience
Kristin Kaufman will be the presenter. This training introduces attendees to the concept of resiliency and how to build resiliency in the youth and families they are working with. This training challenges attendees to assess their own resiliency traits and begin exploring how their own traits impact their ability to build resiliency in youth and families. This training will define resiliency, and explore domains, characteristics, and traits that are needed in order to build and strengthen resiliency. This training will also identify strategies to build resiliency in outside supports and inner strengths in youth and families.
Kristin Kaufman is currently working for Prevent Child Abuse Illinois as the Prevention Specialist for the Central Region. Kristin holds a Master of Science in Human Services from Capella University and a Bachelor of Science in Business Management from Illinois College. Kristin spent 9 years working in Child Welfare before coming to PCA IL. Kristin is active in local and statewide initiatives, including multiple Child Abuse Prevention Coalitions, the Illinois Childhood Trauma Coalition, and the Illinois ACES Response Collaborative. Kristin is an advocate for change, which she facilitates through collaborations, training, community conversations, and strategic planning at all levels.
Directors Best Practice Series, Successful Succession Planning for your Board and CASA Program
Dr. Jill Nilsen has more than 35 years experience working at Eastern Illinois University and was responsible for all of the external outreach to their many customers. She was responsible for marketing, communications, fundraising and building strong alumni relationships. She also is an active volunteer in the regional nonprofit sector having served as board president of the Charleston Area Chamber of Commerce, Excellence in Education Foundation for Charleston, Sarah Bush Lincoln Health Center Board, CASA of East Central Illinois and the Coalition Against Domestic Violence. Jill and her husband Hank reside in Charleston.