Document Type

Capstone Project (Open Access)

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts (B.A.)


Health and Human Services


Collaborative Health & Human Services

First Advisor

Dana Prelsnik


The capstone project focused on addressing systemic challenges for out-of-county foster children/youth cases and by providing recommendations to CASA of Monterey County leadership for incentives for the Court Appointed Supervisor Advocates (CASAs) that agree to advocate for out of county foster child/youth. CASA of Monterey County currently has about 30 children/youth (24%) on their waitlist who are placed out-of-county. These youth historically do not receive a CASA volunteer due to being out-of-county. Without a CASA the fact that 80% of children in foster care have significant mental health issues reduces the chances of their mental health needs being met. Two surveys and two key informant interviews were conducted as a needs assessment for CASA of Monterey County. Participants included new CASAs, active/on-leave CASAs, a current CASA out-of-county advocate, and a Monterey County Social Services Management Analyst. By doing the needs assessment first, CASAs were able to better understand the need for CASA volunteers to take on out-of-county cases. Second, both CASAs who have not taken on a case and those who had provided out-of-county advocacy demonstrated that out-of-county advocacy is achievable. Third, a variety of incentives were identified that would help support CASA volunteers to provide out-of-county advocacy.