Our Mission

Child Advocates engages community volunteers and staff members to protect children who are victims of child abuse. We are their voices in court, ensuring all children thrive in a safe and secure home.

As the nonprofit organization in Indianapolis that mobilizes Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA) volunteers to break the cycle of child abuse, we:

  • Engage and train CASA volunteers to serve children involved in the juvenile court system
  • Equip CASA volunteers to serve as the voice for thousands of children who have faced abuse and/or neglect
  • Empower CASA volunteers to speak up for abused children who are lost in the system and guide them into safe environments where they can thrive
  • Affect real, positive changes in the life of abused/neglected at-risk children in Marion County

The problem is complex, but our goal is simple — ensure that all children in the child welfare system receive the best possible outcome to not just survive, but to thrive.


In child abuse cases in Indianapolis, both the parents and the State of Indiana are represented by legal counsel. There was a time when the children had no one to represent them. That changed in 1982 with the creation of Child Advocates.

Child Advocates, formerly known as the Guardian Ad Litem Project, was founded by the Indianapolis Section of the National Council of Jewish Women (NCJW) in 1982, because NCJW and the courts recognized the need for abused and neglected children to have independent representation. In 1988, NCJW turned over the Guardian Ad Litem Project through assistance from the Indianapolis Legal Aid Society. In 1992 the project was incorporated as Child Advocates, Inc. and became a stand-alone agency.

Since its inception, Child Advocates has represented the best interests of more than 100,000 Indianapolis children – children who were removed from their homes because of abuse and/or neglect. We are the only agency to hold a contract with the Marion County Juvenile Court to provide this service.

Child Advocates aims to provide independent, child-focused representation to every child in Marion County who has suffered abuse and/or neglect.

Measuring Our Impact

2018 By the Numbers:

  • 8,059 children in Indianapolis who were victims of abuse and neglect were served by Child Advocates
  • 749 CASA volunteers
  • 18,795 volunteer hours donated
  • 185 new volunteers trained

Annual Report

Community Partners

We are grateful for all of our Corporate Sponsors and Program Partners. Our work would not be possible without you.

If you are interested in becoming a corporate sponsor or would like to receive more information, please contact Katy Cummings, Chief Advancement Officer at katy@childadvocates.net or 317-205-3067.