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Upcoming Webinars


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. 

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 may forward to your Local Program for its in-service training records. Completing the form acts as your completion certificate.

We urge the local CASA program staff and volunteers to examine our Training Calendar and sign up early.  Any questions or comments regarding the training can be directed to Kristen Bertrand, Training Associate,


Socially Distant Book Club

Monday, August 24, 2020
3:00 pm4:00 pm

Register below for the Zoom Meeting on August 24, 2020 at 3 pm. As you read "MAID: Hard Work, Low Pay, and a Mother's Will to Survive", by Stephanie Land, discussion questions will be posted on the Illinois CASA website and Facebook. On the Illinois CASA website look for the tab labelled “Socially Distant Book Club.” Here you will find the week’s Book Club questions posted. All who register will also receive an invitation by email to join the Illinois CASA Facebook Group “Socially Distant Book Club” for an online slow chat. The questions will be continual throughout the weeks moving from the beginning of the book and slowly advancing toward the end (so as not to spoil your reading experience). Each book group discussion will be 4 weeks in length.

Identifying & Responding to Child Sexual Exploitation; Why Traffickers Target Children in Foster Care & the Negative Effects of COVID-19.

Tuesday, August 25, 2020
11:00 am12:30 pm

This webinar will provide an overview of child sexual exploitation with a focus on vulnerable youth and children in the foster care system. It will also share best practices for identifying and treating minor victims, response strategies, and how the COVID-19 pandemic has affected online exploitation.

This webinar will be presented by Ashley McAree, MSN, RN, FNE-A/P, SANE-A, Human Trafficking Liaison and Forensic Nurse with Greater Baltimore Medical Center’s SAFE Program and co-chair of the Baltimore County Human Trafficking Work Group.

The Issues of Trust and the Parent/Child Bond

Tuesday, September 15, 2020
11:00 am12:30 pm

As a survivor of extraordinary childhood abuse herself, Libby Buchanan is able to bring some much-needed context as well as unique insights into the world of abused and neglected children. After doing the hard work of reconciling her past, she can now give voice to the fears, beliefs and perspectives of broken and hurting children.

This webinar will include:
• Issue of Trust. Those who champion for children are often dismayed to learn that they may be viewed as threatening or even traumatizing by the child. This unit emphasizes the importance of not taking mistrust personally. Practical steps and guidelines that build cooperation and rapport are discussed as well as how to handle that all important first meeting.
• Parent-Child Bond. Nothing can be more baffling than a child who wants to return to a home that is abusive, violent, or corrosive. I use my own experience to address the unconscious reasons and excuses children have for doing so. An examination of the phenomenon of “trauma-bonding” has proven to be helpful for advocates to understand how powerful this bond can be.


Tuesday, September 22, 2020
11:00 am12:30 pm

Sylvia Fonseca, DCFS Adoptions Administrator, and Kelly King, DCFS State Adoptions Assistance Specialist, will discuss several aspects of permanency planning, termination of parental rights and adoption. This training will look at the meaning and benefits of concurrent planning, the importance of looking for relatives and fictive kin at the beginning of the case, understanding the importance of timelines when it comes to permanency planning, understanding the information and documents that should be collected in order for a TPR petition to be filled and to proceed without delay, and lastly working with pre-adoptive/adoptive families to help them understand services available to them and to the child.

The Power of Storytelling in Social Justice--Storycatchers Theatre Group

Tuesday, September 29, 2020
11:00 am12:30 pm

Storycatchers Theatre works with young people who are justice involved, and guides them to transform their real life experiences into powerful musical theatre. We work within the IDJJ facilities and provide employment to the youth post release where they learn critical life and coping skills, job skills and get pathways to future career opportunities.

Problematic Sexual Behavior in Youth: Dispelling myths, examining effective responses, and instilling hope

Tuesday, October 6, 2020
11:00 am12:30 pm

Youth Outreach Services is dedicated to providing services to underserved youth and families in our community. As part of these efforts, YOS began to offer evidence-based treatment for youth displaying problematic sexual behavior in 2017. Youth with problematic sexual behavior - or PSB - is a chronically underserved and misunderstood population. During this presentation, myths and misconceptions about youth with PSB will be discussed, the most current and accurate research will be provided, and information regarding best practices to serve these youth will be reviewed.


Margaret Hensley, LMFT

Margaret has been with YOS since 2016, and started as a family therapist providing outpatient therapy services to youth and families in Cook County. Margaret is currently the program manager for the Multisystemic therapy (MST) and Multisystemic therapy for youth who have had problematic sexual behavior (MST PSB) programs . Margaret is a CBT PSB (cognitive behavioral therapy for youth with problematic sexual behavior) therapist trainer, and group facilitator, and co-supervises YOS’ Trauma Focused CBT program with Peggy Moulton.

Peggy Moulton, LCSW

Peggy has been with YOS since 2012, when she started as a Multisystemic Therapist (MST) and MST PSB therapist, providing intensive in-home therapy to youth and families in Cook County. She is now the program manager for YOS’ CBT PSB program (cognitive behavioral therapy for youth with problematic sexual behavior), as well as supervising YOS’ wrap program for youth dually involved in DCFS and the juvenile justice system and co-supervising YOS’ Trauma Focused CBT program with Margaret Hensley.

Normalizing and the Role of Therapy.

Tuesday, October 13, 2020
11:00 am12:30 pm

As a survivor of extraordinary childhood abuse herself, Libby Buchanan is able to bring some much-needed context as well as unique insights into the world of abused and neglected children. After doing the hard work of reconciling her past, she can now give voice to the fears, beliefs and perspectives of broken and hurting children.

This webinar will include:
• Normalizing. It’s important for attendees to understand that they and the child they’re representing may see, interpret and understand the world very differently. The filters through which a child with PTSD view his/her environment can be surprising and varied. Attendees will gain an understanding how simple matters like compliments, gift giving, sarcasm and playful threats can easily be misinterpreted by the child being represented.
• The Role of Therapy. There are several reasons why most kids are reluctant to go to therapy. And when they do go, they are rarely willing to talk about the trauma that is sending them there. But that’s okay. There is more to therapy than revisiting abuse.

COLLATERAL DAMAGE: Children of Domestic Violence and How We Can Help

Tuesday, October 20, 2020
11:00 am12:30 pm

14 million children are exposed to DV each year. The majority receive no therapeutic intervention. We as a society and each of us individually need to be proactive towards eradicating what has become an international pandemic - a societal disease for which there is a cure.

Alicen J McGowan is the ultimate pedagogue. From therapist, first-responder, thought leader, parent and counselor, she has studied and learned from everyone she meets. As a national speaker in the field of Domestic Violence and Children of DV, Dr Alicen has trained hundreds in the fields of Social Work, Law Enforcement, Psychology, Law/Mediation and Education. She is an outstanding speaker and storyteller.

  • National CASA
    National CASA
  • Illinois DCFS
    Illinois DCFS
  • The Office of Illinois Courts
    The Office of Illinois Courts
  • Illinois Attorney General
    Illinois Attorney General