In addition to the initial 39 hours of training and courtroom observation, we ask that volunteers complete 12 hours of Continuing Education each year, including trainings hosted by CASA and within the community; relevant books, articles, podcasts or films; webinars and more. 

For the full Continuing Education training calendar and library, please log into our Volunteer Resource Area and see the sidebar menu. If you do not have the username and password, please contact your supervisor!

Here are some upcoming training opportunities that will count towards your approved Continuing Education hours:

Saturday, July 22 – Stewards of Children: Child Sexual Abuse Prevention

Stewards of Children is a prevention and response program for adults. The program provides simple and effective practices to prevent, recognize, and react to child sexual abuse. Stewards of Children is the only internationally available program scientifically proven to increase knowledge, improve attitudes and change child-protective behaviors. This program is for any responsible adult who cares about the welfare of children and particularly appropriate for training staff and volunteers of youth-serving organizations.

Time: 9:00 - 11:30 am
Location: Center for Child Protection Conference Center, 8509 FM 969, Bldg 1, Austin 78724

Tuesday, July 25 – Transformation

The Honorable Darlene Byrne will be hosting this free session to provide invaluable information to those who represent children and their parents about the Courts’ restructuring of the child welfare dockets in Travis County, including policies and procedures the Court will employ to ensure all child welfare matters are heard. The session will provide the information needed to be able to get Child Protective Services (CPS) matters set and heard in the Travis County Courts.

There is no cost to attend and no need to RSVP to attend this session. Attendees are always welcome to bring a sack lunch and eat in the courtroom during a presentation.

Time: 12:00 - 1:00 pm
Location: 126th Civil District Court, 1000 Guadalupe, 4th floor, Austin 78701

Thursday, July 27 – Webinar: Caring for LGBTQ Youth: An Introduction for Foster & Adoptive Parents

Foster and adoptive parents are an extremely diverse community of people with one thing in common: the desire to love, nurture and care for children and youth. Many parents may not realize that LGBTQ youth are overrepresented in foster care and are at higher risks of rejection and harm while in care. This webinar will first explain key terms and concepts that all foster/adoptive parents need to know in order to better understand LGBTQ youth. Research on the importance of providing affirming homes for these youth, as well as concrete tips for how to be affirming will then be presented.

Time: 5:00 - 6:00 pm

Friday-Saturday, August 4-5 – Knowing Who You Are Training – Helping Youth in Care Develop Healthy Racial and Ethnic Identity

This 1.5 day workshop explores race and ethnicity. It is designed to help child welfare workers and child advocates guide the children they serve to develop healthy racial and ethnic identities. This training will provide volunteers with practical ways to integrate race and ethnic identity work into day-to-day practice with all youth, regardless of race and ethnicity.

The course also steers you towards tangible action plans that can help you instill a healthy racial and ethnic identity for the children you serve, which will be crucial in them growing up to be a confident and positive individual. We will be providing food for both days and this course will also give you the full 12 continuing education credits needed for the year.

Time: Friday 5:30 - 9:00 pm & Saturday 8:30 am - 4:30 pm
Location: CASA Training Room, 2nd Floor

Friday, August 11 – TBRI for Advocates

Join us for a special presentation on trauma-informed advocacy titled “Trust-Based Relational Intervention (TBRI) for Advocates.” This 7.5 hour training is designed to provide advocates with education, resources and support when working with children from hard places. It offers a new approach to working with children who have experienced trauma, emphasizing trust-building and “felt safety.” This training will provide hands on resources and information on how trauma impacts the brains of children from hard places, what resources are currently available in the Travis County system, and tools to enhance trauma-informed advocacy.

Time: 8:30 am - 5:00 pm
Location: CASA Training Room, 2nd Floor

Thursday, August 17 – Educational Advocacy

Disability Rights Texas is the federally-designated legal protection and advocacy agency for people with disabilities in Texas. Their attorneys and advocates help people with disabilities understand and exercise their rights under the law by providing direct legal assistance, by advocating in court, and by educating policy makers about issues that impact rights and services for people with disabilities.

August is Back to School time for kiddos of Texas. Returning to school after a long summer break can be a struggle for any child. But what might make returning to school even more challenging?

  • Your child has a learning disability and is falling behind their peers
  • Your child has a history of trauma
  • Your child has been moved from placement to placement (and school to school)
  • All of the above

This training will be a meaningful conversation about some of the ways that Disability Rights Texas and CASA can advocate for children with educational needs to consider. The seats on this school bus will fill up fast, so line up at the stop and RSVP for this presentation!

Time: 6:30 - 8:00 pm
Location: CASA Training Room, 2nd Floor

Tuesday, August 22 – The Anatomy of a FSPS/CPS Psychological Evaluation

The Honorable Darlene Byrne will be hosting this free session to increase the understanding of the major components of a basic DFPS/CPS psychological evaluation. Attendees will leave with a better understanding of the utility and scientific limitations of a psychological evaluation within the child welfare system. Dr. Richard K. Yuen, Clinical Director at Lonestar Psychological Services, will be the guest speaker at this training.

There is no cost to attend and no need to RSVP to attend this session. Attendees are always welcome to bring a sack lunch and eat in the courtroom during a presentation.

Time: 12:00 – 1:00 pm
Location: 126th Civil District Court, 1000 Guadalupe, 4th floor, Austin 78701

Thursday, September 28 – Webinar: School-Based Advocacy for LGBTQ Youth in Foster Care

LGBTQ foster youth experience higher rates of bullying and are more likely to drop out of school – but positive, affirming school environments can truly be a lifeline for this population. In this webinar, you will learn about the risk factors for LGBTQ youth in education settings and how this intersects with their out-of-home care status. You will also explore best practices to help ensure that LGBTQ foster youth have a welcoming and supportive school experience; and learn about school resources, behaviors and policies that can encourage the healthy development of LGBTQ youth and create the building blocks for their lifelong opportunities and academic success.

Time: 12:00 - 1:00 pm

Wednesday, October 25 – Webinar: The Role of Youth Advocates in Developing Affirming Families for LGBTQ Youth

Many agencies understand the need to develop more affirming families for LGBTQ youth in care, yet struggle to meet the family-based placement needs of this vulnerable population. In this webinar, You Gotta Believe, an agency in Coney Island, NY, will present the strategies behind its innovative and impactful model for engaging Youth Advocates in finding permanent families for adolescents, including LGBTQ youth in particular.

Time: 1:00 - 2:00 pm

Optima Training

If at any time you would like a refresher on Optima you can attend the first hour of Class 7 – Documentation & Court Reports at the CASA training room. No need to sign up ahead of time, just show up and sign in and you’ll receive 1 hour of continuing education. Class 7 is being offered the following dates and times in 2017:

  • Monday, July 17th @ 9:30 am
  • Monday, July 17th @ 6:30 pm
  • Monday, September 11th @ 9:30 am
  • Monday, September 11th @ 6:30 pm
  • Monday, November 6th @ 9:30 am
  • Monday, November 6th @ 6:30 pm

If you know of any upcoming trainings or webinars to add to this list, please contact Marketing Manager Steven Olender via email.