According to a recent studymore than 30% of youth in foster care identify as LGBTQ, compared to about 11% of the general youth population. This disparity is due in large part to the fact that for children, coming out to family members can lead to verbal and physical harassment, abuse and even full-on rejection, making them more likely than their non-LGBTQ peers to experience homelessness and/or end up in foster care. Once they are in foster care, these youth face all the same challenges and barriers their non-LGBTQ peers face, such as dealing with trauma, placement changes, falling behind in school, mental health challenges and more–but with the added layer of fear of further rejection, abuse and harassment if they are open about their LGBTQ identity.

With the goal of expanding the CASA network to better represent the demographics and experiences of youth in care, we created a new toolkit, including two new handouts, to help programs share the importance of spreading awareness of CASA and recruiting within the LGBTQ+ community. Also in the toolkit are resources and tips to help programs create a welcoming environment for all.

Recruitment Handout

This double-sided, one-page handout is a recruitment piece designed to share with all communities, which highlights outcomes that youth in care who identify as LGBTQ+ experience, and how, as a CASA volunteer, someone can make a difference in the life of youth across Texas.

Download The Handout

Rack Card

The rack card is a 3.75”w x 9”h condensed version of the handout. There’s two versions, one with a bleed for professional printers and one without for in-house printing and trimming.

Download The Rack Card With Bleeds
Download The Rack Card Without Bleeds

Talking Points

Share this document with your board, stakeholders or anyone in the network or community to give them information and statistics on why expanding the diversity of the CASA network, and reaching and recruiting from new communities, is essential to the youth in care and to grow the number of volunteers across the state.

View The Talking Points

Creating a Welcoming & Inclusive Environment

While recruitment is important to help us reach our goal of diversifying our volunteer pool to better match the demographics of the children in care, it’s equally important that current and future advocates feel welcome and supported from the beginning. Read the article below for 15 tips on how to create a welcoming environment.

Read The Article

Benchmarks of LGBTQ+ Inclusion

All Children – All Families discusses seven main areas of inclusive policies and affirming practices that organizations should implement to best serve LGBTQ+ children, youth and families.

View The Benchmarks

Building a Better Website

We often hear the phrase, “make it inclusive,” but what does that mean and how do you do it? Web developer, Jaymie Strecker, says, “In reality, being inclusive is about understanding your audience and making your site resonate with them.” Check out the article below to learn why having an inclusive website is important and 12 ways to update your website to get you started.

Read The Article

Pronoun Usage

Using incorrect pronouns, or assuming someone’s pronouns, can be uncomfortable and hurtful. Learn how to create a safe space for people to share their pronouns and what do to if you do make a mistake.

View The Guide

Sample Interview Questions

Including interview questions with a focus on diversity can demonstrate to potential advocates that your organization is an ally to all communities. View a few sample questions that CASA programs in Texas are already using at the button below.

View The Questions

All Children – All Families Online Learning Center

All Children – All Families provides an incredible library of free webinars and other resources to enhance your knowledge of working with and recruiting in the LGBTQ+ community. A few we recommend are:

  • Strategies for LGBTQ Community Engagement at Pride Festivals
  • The Role of Allies in Creating LGBTQ-Inclusive Workplaces
  • Taking a Collaborative Approach to LGBTQ Policy Creation & Implementation
Visit The Learning Archive

Free Stock Images

Get free stock images depicting LGBTQ+ youth and adults at the links below.

Pexels.com
DiverseTechGeek.com
GenderPhotos.Vice.com

 

LGBTQ+ Recruitment

According to a recent study, more than 30% of youth in foster care identify as LGBTQ, compared to about 11% of the general youth population. This disparity is due in large part to the fact that for children, coming out to family members can lead to verbal and physical harassment, abuse and even full-on rejection, making them more likely than their … Read More

The Imagination Report

The Imagination Report is an original, collaborative piece between Riders Against the Storm, Ebony Stewart – local musicians and Texas CASA’s Jonathan Horstmann. Together, they created an original song, poem and music video exclusively for Texas CASA and the CASA network. The song is meant to inspire and show the difference one person can make in a child’s life. By … Read More

Optima Data Management Toolkit

Optima Data Management Guide The Optima Data Management Guide defines two types of Optima data, identifies common reports, lists basic data definitions, addresses Optima rules, describes recommended practices—all in an effort to create and ensure uniformity, consistency and accuracy in our data management practices across the state. VIEW NOW Texas CASA Network Data Definitions The Texas CASA network has established … Read More

Praesidium Academy

Welcome to the Praesidium Academy! You play a vital role in keeping your CASA program a safe place. At Praesidium Academy, you can learn about proper boundaries, how sexual abuse offenders operate, how to stop sexual abuse and much more. Choose from the Program Staff or Program Leadership instructions below to learn how to set up an account and take … Read More

Clergy, CASA & Community Toolkit

The Clergy, CASA and Community initiative convened a leadership team comprised of faith community leaders, DFPS and CASA program staff from around the state. Over the last two years, the Clergy and CASA Advisory Council has provided input and recommendations for guidebooks, promotional materials and training resources to inspire faith communities with the CASA mission and support them in becoming … Read More