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Florida Guardian Ad Litem Program Says Volunteers Are Needed

Florida’s Guardian ad Litem program, which advocates for neglected and abused children, recently announced it now has more than 10,000 volunteers statewide.

But with more than 23,000 children in the child welfare system in Florida, the volunteer-based program always needs more people who want to help out.

The job of a volunteer guardian is to visit and get to know their assigned youth, and later advocate for that child’s best interests when necessary in the court system.

Guardian ad Litem Executive Director Alan Abramowitz says many children are too young to vocalize their needs in court, and that is the main objective for their guardian.

He says almost anyone can volunteer, as long as he or she is over 18, can pass a background check, and cares about kids.

“Our goal is for every child that comes into foster care to have a volunteer. On average, our volunteers will have one or two children,” Abramowitz said. “That is what makes them so great. They really get to know these children, and get their trust, so they can advocate effectively to the court.”

On average, volunteers spend about ten hours per month working with their kids, who range from newborn to 21 years old.

Program details are available at www.guardianadlitem.org.

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