Child Advocates

Child Advocates of Silicon Valley, founded in 1986, provides resources for local foster children from birth to age 21 who have experienced abuse, neglect or abandonment.

• Mission: Child Advocates of Silicon Valley strives to support every Silicon Valley foster child, from newborn to age 21, who has experienced abuse, neglect and/or abandonment by ensuring they have the nurturing support of a Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA). CASAs are volunteers from the community appointed by a judge to be a mentor, advocate and voice for the child. Their intervention reduces the impacts of experienced trauma.

• 2021 update: To better serve children, Child Advocates dedicated staff and resources to specialty areas that better equip CASAs to help children thrive. The nonprofit also launched partnerships with eight local organizations that have agreed to offer free resources, programming and/or admission for activities CASAs can enjoy with their foster children. Partners include Children’s Discovery Museum, Happy Hollow Park and Zoo and FIRST 5 Santa Clara County.

• Why the Holiday Fund is needed: The Holiday Fund assists with Child Advocates’ continuing drive to match as many Santa Clara County foster children with court-appointed representation as possible.

Donations lead to connections such as the one between Joelle, a CASA, and Zianna, a 17-year-old, driven foster youth. With college on the horizon, the two spent the pandemic working on college applications, applying for scholarships and navigating financial aid. With Joelle’s support, Zianna is attending UC Davis, is enrolled in several programs to support her transition into college and has received scholarships and funding to cover housing, tuition and books.

To further ensure Zianna was set up for success, Joelle visited the Child Advocates CASA Store to secure a bicycle, laptop and essential dorm room items for Zianna.

Funding also helps with the recruiting and training of new volunteers as well as supporting current CASAs and youth as they navigate life and the foster care system.

Child Advocates of Silicon Valley

Location: Sobrato Center for Nonprofits, Milpitas

Founded: 1986

Annual budget: $3.4 million

Staff: 33 employees; 677 CASA volunteers