Local News

September GAL training opportunity


The Cass Elias McCarter Guardian ad Litem Program, a division of the South Carolina Department of Children’s Advocacy, is offering free virtual training beginning Tuesday, September 19, 2023, to those interested in becoming a volunteer Guardian ad Litem (GAL) in Clarendon County.  GALs advocate on behalf of abused and neglected children who are involved in family court legal proceedings through the Department of Social Services (DSS).

Volunteers should be at least 21 years old, have a clean criminal record, no previous DSS case history, have time available and the desire to help a child in their community.

Currently the Clarendon County GAL Program is serving 58 children, but there are only 13 volunteer GALs to assist. While GAL staff fill in the gaps, the need for more volunteers is urgent.

“The need is greater than ever in our state for volunteer advocates.  Our goal is to ensure that every child in the family court system has a voice and finds a safe permanent home as quickly as possible. We are always looking for caring and dedicated individuals to advocate on behalf of our state’s most vulnerable 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 Sarah Schultz, Regional Recruiter and Trainer for the GAL program, at (803) 365-3379 or Sarah.Schultz@childadvocate.sc.gov for more information.