First Circuit CASA

First Circuit CASA Logo

Basic Information

Address: 200 E 5th Avenue, Suite 2 Mitchell, SD
Phone Number: 605-996-1212
Fax Number: 605-990-2758
Director: Jackie Horton

Action Shots

First Circuit CASA
First Circuit CASA
First Circuit CASA

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Additional Information

Causes Served: abuse & neglect of children
Clearances Required: Yes
Background Check: Yes
Population Served: Children ages 0-18
Ages for Volunteer: 21+
Hours of Service: varies
Minimum Hours Required: 8-10 monthly
Days of Service: varies
Mission Statement:

Cultivating court-appointed advocates to give every abused and neglected child a voice.

Philosophy/Belief Statement:

Like the mission, core values drive organizational decision-making and attitudes, while helping to define how a nonprofit will allocate its staff, financial and volunteer resources. The programs that are implemented and the actions that are taken by CASA’s leaders, staff and advocates will provide concrete evidence that the organization practices what it preaches. The Strategic Planning Team agreed upon adherence to the following values:


Again, each word was carefully chosen.
 Compassion: CASA will always show sympathetic concern for the sufferings or misfortunes of abused and neglected children. Applicable synonyms that are captured in CASA’s identification of compassion as a value: Care, empathy, sympathy, concern, sensitivity, kindness, humanity.

 Resilience: The planning team identified that resilience permeates CASA. The children demonstrate resilience by surviving misfortune and even tragedy. The volunteer advocates demonstrate resilience by returning again and again to stand strong with the children even when circumstances repeatedly prove challenging. CASA has demonstrated resilience by surviving difficult times to become an organization that is financially strong and led by a professional and committed board of directors and executive director. “Resilience is that ineffable quality that allows some people to be knocked down by life and come back stronger than ever. Rather than letting failure overcome them and drain their resolve, they find a way to rise from the ashes … Even after misfortune, resilient people are blessed with such an outlook that they are able to change course and soldier on” (definition from Psychology Today).

 Accountability: CASA’s board, executive and staff have an obligation and willingness to accept responsibility for fulfillment of its mission. Furthermore, CASA will strive to work as a team with stakeholders such as the state government, court system, community and donors to be accountable for trustworthy, honest and dependable program practices and expenditure of funds.

Program History:

In September of 2000 , studies conducted by the Davison County Child Protection Team indicated child abuse victims in Davison County did not have representation and advocacy. CASA (court appointed special advocates) was selected as the best approach to address this growing need and the local program was formed in 2001. The Davison County Child Protection Team and National CASA provided start-up funding for the operation. Since 2001, First Circuit CASA has been recruiting, training, and supervising volunteers who advocate for children in the 1st Judicial Circuit (serving Aurora, Brule, Buffalo, Davison, Douglas, Hanson, Hutchinson, and McCook counties in South Dakota). CASA’s goal is to ensure safety and permanency for children whose lives are in turmoil. After years of effective and compassionate advocacy, over 350 children’s lives have been changed for the better in the First Judicial Circuit. Our ultimate goal would be that we are able to advocate on behalf of 100% of the abused and neglected children in our jurisdiction. First Circuit CASA is a member program of the National CASA Association.


Baskets of Hope Luncheon - Spring before Easter
50/50 raffle during Corn Palace Challenge in October
Cool Nights Warm Hearts - Fall before Thanksgiving