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In-Service Readings

This section offers suggestions for written training courses, publications, and books that volunteers can read for in-service training hours. The publications and written training courses indicate the number of applicable in-service hours and include a brief summary of the topics covered. For books, Illinois CASA recommends that you receive in-service hours matching the time it takes you to read the book. Track the time it takes you to read the book and record than on the Illinois CASA In-Service Training Completion Survey. If your program has a different requirement for receiving in-service hours for books, please adhere to your program’s practice.

Place your cursor over the “Library Search” link to view a summary of the book. Then click on the link to locate the book at the library nearest to you based on your zip code. The search results will also give you a source to purchase the book online as well as offer book reviews.

Tip – If a book is not found at your local library, ask your librarian if they participate in an interlibrary loan program.

CASA Volunteer Work
Lighting The Way (Library Search)
I Speak For This Child (Library Search)
Child Development
Building the Bonds of Attachment: Awakening the Love in Deeply Troubled Children (2nd edition)
(Library Search)
Will I Ever See You Again? Attachment challenges for foster children: A primer for the adults in their lives. (Library Search)
Child Protection and the Legal System
No Matter How Loud I Shout: A Year in the Life of Juvenile Court (Library Search)
Somebody Else’s Children: The Courts, the Kids, and the Struggle to Save America’s Troubled Families (Library Search)
Tender Mercies: Inside the World of a Child Abuse Investigator (Library Search)
Turning Stones: My Days and Nights with Children at Risk – A Caseworker’s Story (Library Search)
Child Welfare
A Child Called IT (Library Search)
A Life Without Consequences (Library Search)
A Parent’s and Teacher’s Handbook on Identifying and Preventing Child Abuse (Library Search)
City of One – A Memoir (Library Search)
The Family Secret: A Personal Account of Incest (Library Search)
The Sexualized Child in Foster Care: A Guide for Foster Parents and Other Professionals (Library Search)
Sibling Abuse: Hidden, Physical, Emotional and Sexual Trauma (Library Search)
Wayne – An Abused Child’s Story of Courage, Survival, and Hope (Library Search)
Wounded Innocents and Fallen Angels: Child Abuse and Child Aggression (Library Search)
Handbook on Questioning Children: A Linguistic Perspective (Library Search)
How To Talk To Your Kids About Really Important Things: Specific Questions and Answers and Useful Things to Say (for children age 4 – 12) (Library Search)
Cultural Competence
Always My Child – A Parent’s Guide to Understanding Your Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgendered or Questioning Son or Daughter (Library Search)
An American Family (Library Search)
Developing Cross – Cultural Competence (Library Search)
Gay and Lesbian Students: Understanding Their Needs (Library Search)
The Indian Child Welfare Act Handbook (Library Search)
Lesbian, Gay and Bisexual Identities and Youth (Library Search)
Two-Spirit People: Native American Gender Identity, Sexuality, and Spirituality (Library Search)
Domestic Violence
Fist, Stick, Knife, Gun: A Personal History of Violence in America (Library Search)
Lost Boys: Why Our Sons Turn Violent and How We Can Save Them (Library Search)
The Batterer as Parent (Library Search)
When Katie Wakes: A Memoir (Library Search)
The Complete IEP Guide (Library Search)
Learning Curves (Library Search)
From Rage to Hope: Strategies for Reclaiming Black and Hispanic Students (Library Search)
Foster Care and Adoption
A Child’s Journey Through Placement (Library Search)
A Man Named Dave (Library Search)
A Rage To Do Better: Listening to Young People from the Foster Care System (Library Search)
Another Place at the Table (Library Search)
Beyond the Foster Care System: The Future for Teens (Library Search)
Finding Fish, A Memoir (Library Search)
Foster Care Odyssey: A Black Girl’s Story (Library Search)
Hope’s Boy (Library Search)
The Language of Flowers (Library Search)
The Lost Boy (Library Search)
On Their Own: What Happens to Kids When They Age Out of the Foster Care System (Library Search)
Someone There For Me (Library Search)
The Things I Want The Most (Library Search)
Three Little Words (Library Search)
Troubled Transplants (Library Search)
Understanding The Medical Diagnosis of Child Maltreatment: A Guide for Non-Medical Professionals (Library Search)
Mental Health
Jordi/Little Ralphie and the Creature (Library Search)
Sickened (Library Search)
Young Children and Trauma: Intervention and Treatment (Library Search)
Loving Through Bars: Children with Parents in Prison (Library Search)
Substance Abuse
Crystal Meth: they call it ice (Library Search)
METH the Home Cooked Menace (Library Search)
When Drug Addicts Have Children: Reorienting Child Welfare’s Response (Library Search)
Additional Resource: National CASA Book List (categorized by topic)



The following publications are recommended for in-service hours. Each publication indicates the number of hours that should be submitted to your local program for documentation.

2016 CYPM In Brief: Improving Educational Outcomes for Crossover Youth (Center for Juvenile Justice Reform)

The Crossover Youth Practice Model (CYPM) was developed to improve outcomes for youth who are involved in the child welfare and juvenile justice systems. This brief is the third in a series that addresses important issues faced by crossover youth and the systems that serve them. (0.5 hours)

2017 CYPM In Brief: Engaging Court Appointed Special Advocates to Improve Outcomes for Crossover Youth (Center for Juvenile Justice Reform)

This brief, which is the fourth in a series of CJJR publications that address important issues faced by crossover youth and the systems that serve them, highlights the critical role that CASAs play in supporting crossover youth. (0.5 hours)

2018 Prevention Resource Guide (The Children’s Bureau)

Resources for National Child Abuse Prevention Month (April) 2018 are included in this guide. This was designed to support service providers as they work with families to promote child well-being and prevent child maltreatment. It focuses on protective factors that build on family strengths to foster healthy child and youth development. (1.5 hours)

The Risk and Prevention of Maltreatment of Children with Disabilities (Children’s Bureau)

This publication examines the statistics and research related to the maltreatment of children with disabilities, risk factors, and strategies for prevention. Issues encountered when assessing a child with a disability for maltreatment are explored, and information about promising prevention, collaboration, and training approaches are outlined. (0.5 hours)

The Road to Adulthood: Aligning Child Welfare Practice with Adolescent Brain Development (Annie E Casey Foundation)

With knowledge of how the adolescent brain matures, adults can do more to ensure that the road leaving foster care will take young people to self-sufficiency and successful adulthood. This guide tells how. (1 hour)

Rural Child Welfare Practice (The Children’s Bureau)

This publication highlights the importance of understanding the concerns and needs of children and families in rural communities, their strengths, and resources, and the cultural sensitivity required of child welfare professionals as they work to achieve safety, permanency, and well-being for rural children. (0.5 hours)

Supporting Brain Development in Traumatized Children and Youth (The Children’s Bureau)  NEW

Summarizes the effects of early trauma on brain development and steps child welfare professionals can take to screen for developmental delays and identify the trauma-affected children and youth in their care. Looks at ways to access cross-sector, therapeutic, and evidence-based treatment to encourage healthy recovery for trauma-affected children and youth. (0.5 hours)

Working with Kinship Caregivers (The Children’s Bureau)  NEW

This bulletin is designed to help child welfare professionals promote kinship care by providing kinship caregivers with information, referral, and support services to ensure the safety, permanency, and well-being of children in their care. Information about trends in kinship care, caseworker and caregiver training, and examples of successful State and local kinship care programs are included. (0.5 hours)