Volunteers Needed to Help Local Abused and Neglected Children

The Cass Elias McCarter Guardian ad Litem Program, a division of the South Carolina Department of Children’s Advocacy is offering FREE ONLINE TRAINING to those interested in becoming a volunteer Guardian ad Litem (GAL) in Laurens County.  Volunteers advocate on behalf of abused and neglected children who are involved in Family Court legal proceedings through the Department of Social Services (DSS).  

There are only 4 free virtual training opportunities remaining this year beginning on August 13, 2024, September 3, 2024, October 1, 2024, and October 28, 2024.  

Volunteers should be at least 21 years old, have a clean criminal record, no previous DSS case history, and be able to contribute four to five hours a month of your time for a child.

Currently the Laurens GAL Program is serving 183 children, but there are only 19 volunteer GALs to assist. While GAL staff fill in the gaps, the need for more volunteers is urgent. “We’re always looking for dedicated individuals who are passionate about advocating for children,” says LaDara Depugh, Director of the South Carolina GAL program.   

Visit gal.sc.gov for more information and to download an application. Follow @Cass Elias McCarter Guardian ad Litem Program on Facebook or contact communications@childadvocate.sc.gov to be added to the newsletter for updates and local events in your area.

Contact Erin Petrella, Regional Recruiter and Trainer for the GAL program, at (864) 381-3725 or Erin.Petrella@childadvocate.sc.gov for more information.