The Guardian ad Litem Program in the Sixth Judicial Circuit, serving Pasco and Pinellas counties has announced significant changes to its training program for volunteers.
Guardian ad Litem volunteers are individuals from the community who are specially trained to advocate for an abused, neglected or abandoned child. The traditional training model consisted of 30 hours in a classroom, which was sometimes daunting for potential volunteers.
“I think this new training program will go a long way in making the opportunity to volunteer a reality for many people,” said Circuit Director Donna Rasmussen.
The training will now involve three phases consisting of some independent study materials, shortened classroom time and hands-on field experience under the mentorship of an experienced volunteer. This new training allows volunteers the opportunity to learn in a way that has more practical application, rather than learning everything they need to know in a classroom and then trying to apply it.
The state of Florida Guardian ad Litem Program to provide a new approach for training volunteers, who serve a vital role in the child welfare system, ensuring that the needs of children are being met and their best interest is represented in the court process developed the training.
If you are interested in learning more about becoming a Guardian ad Litem volunteer in either Pasco or Pinellas county, call 866-341-1425.