May 2016Vol. 17, No. 3May Is National Foster Care Month
Family reunification is the preferred permanency option in child welfare, and it is the most common goal for children and youth in out-of-home care. In fact, according to the Adoption and Foster Care Analysis and Reporting System, 51 percent of children who exited foster care in fiscal year 2014 were reunited with their parents or primary caretakers. The 2016 National Foster Care Month (NFCM) initiative focuses on family reunification with the theme "Honoring, Uniting, and Celebrating Families." This year's initiative website offers resources and tools for child welfare professionals, birth parents, foster parents and caregivers, youth, and more to help all parties in a child's life work toward and support the reunification process. The resources and tools include the following:
- A new For Parents page designed to help parents learn more about the child welfare system and what to expect during the reunification process
- A For Communities page that offers information on how to become a foster parent and highlights other ways to contribute to the positive development of children and youth in foster care
- New Real-Life Stories of children, youth, and families that connect real-life scenarios to important practice issues
- Updated outreach tools to Spread the Word and raise awareness about NFCM, including new content for email signature blocks and graphics for social media pages
- A new NFCM Facebook Campaign Page that allows the foster care community to promote local events, make new contacts, and share stories
The Children's Bureau, together with Child Welfare Information Gateway and other partner organizations, promotes NFCM each May and raises awareness about the important roles everyone can play in the lives of children and youth in care. Explore the 2016 NFCM website at https://www.childwelfare.gov/fostercaremonth/.