Volunteer with the Florida Guardian Ad Litem Office
Through our dedicated volunteers, we meet our mission to represent Florida’s abused, neglected, and abandoned children. When a child is in the dependency court system due to abuse, neglect, or abandonment, the judge stands in the parent’s shoes, must protect the child and make the decisions a parent normally would. When a judge appoints the Florida Statewide Guardian ad Litem Office, we use a multi-disciplinary team approach that always includes a Guardian ad Litem Attorney, a professional child welfare manager, and hopefully a trained volunteer or pro bono attorney from the child’s community. This team approach is nationally recognized as the best practice to represent a child’s legal interests.
In Florida, the only type of attorney in the courtroom who must provide all information regarding the child and family situation to the judge is a Guardian ad Litem Attorney. This allows the judge to make decisions on what is in the child’s best interest, based on all unfiltered information provided about the child and family to the judge.
While every component of the multi-disciplinary team is crucial to the success of the representation of the child, volunteers providing their time, skills, mentorship, empathy, and sound judgment are the backbone of the Florida Statewide Guardian ad Litem Office.
As a volunteer, you are responsible for gathering facts surrounding a child’s case, reviewing reports, finding out the child’s wants and desires, visiting a child’s home, school, or placement, and providing the court with an unbiased recommendation on what is required to serve the child’s best interests. The volunteer assists in providing the judge with the information needed and what the child wants, so the judge can decide what is in the child’s best interests.
To become a volunteer, you must pass a background check, provide three letters of reference, participate in an interview, and complete free, online training.
Every child needs a stable adult; you can be that person. Complete the volunteer inquiry form to begin changing a child’s life.