News From the Children's Bureau
- History of the Children's Bureau
History of the Children's Bureau
Child welfare professionals interested in the long history of service and dedication of the Children's Bureau can now download an audio file of "Justice, Not Pity: Julia Lathrop, First Chief of the U.S. Children's Bureau," by Dr. Cecelia Tichi, Chair of Modern Culture in the John W. Kluge Center at the Library of Congress. Dr. Tichi provides a thoughtful retrospective of Children's Bureau Chief Julia Lathrop and sheds light on the various child welfare challenges that led to the establishment of the Children's Bureau in the early part of the 20th century. The audio is available through the teleconference archive of the FRIENDS National Resource Center for Community-Based Child Abuse Prevention website.
- New! On the Children's Bureau Site
New! On the Children's Bureau Site
The Children's Bureau website carries information on child welfare programs, funding, monitoring, training and technical assistance, laws, statistics, research, Federal reporting, and much more. The "New on Site" section includes grant announcements, policy announcements, agency information, and recently released publications.
Recent additions to the site include:
- IM 07-08: Issued: October 8, 2007. Guidance and Suggested Format for Program Improvement Plans in Child and Family Service Reviews (CFSRs)
- Program Improvement Plan Instructions and Matrix
Visit the Children's Bureau website often to see what's new!
- Enhancing Casework Supervision: The Southern Regional QIC for Child Protection
Enhancing Casework Supervision: The Southern Regional QIC for Child Protection
Fourth in a series of articles on the Children's Bureau's Quality Improvement Centers
Enhanced casework supervision has the potential to improve outcomes for children as well as effect positive changes in worker practice, workforce turnover, and organizational culture. The Southern Regional Quality Improvement Center (SRQIC) for Child Protection focused its 5-year program of research and demonstration projects on identifying innovations in supervisor practice that would produce these positive outcomes.
With funding from the Children's Bureau beginning in 2001, the University of Kentucky College of Social Work created and operated the SRQIC. A regional needs assessment conducted during the first year identified caseworker supervision as a pivotal issue in child protection services. The SRQIC then made grants to four State demonstration projects that incorporated innovative practices into caseworker supervision and collected data on their results. Their findings support the use of a more clinical approach to caseworker supervision and point to the importance of providing professional development for workers and reinforcing the training in the field.
The diversity of the demonstration projects produced a range of qualitative and quantitative results. Specifically:
- Arkansas: The project focused on field-based mentoring of supervisors, structured case review, and online tutorials. Despite a hiring freeze during this time, supervisors who participated reported positive changes in their practice and in that of their caseworkers.
- Mississippi: Researchers used a cultural consensus approach to establish a learning-based organizational culture that promoted best practices, teamwork, and the development of clinical supervision skills. This project led to improved perceptions of worker self-efficacy and organizational culture and lessened turnover among workers.
- Missouri: In a role demonstration project, workers observed supervisor models in actual and simulated treatment interventions. The training led to both better case outcomes and to improved practice and morale among workers.
- Tennessee: This project involved classroom training focused on clinical decision-making for supervisors from across the State and was coupled with a popular mentoring component.
The SRQIC provided training and technical assistance and aided in conducting the project evaluations. While the projects used a variety of approaches to enhance caseworker supervision, the overall results support the potential of quality supervision focused on education and support for workers to help both workers and the children and families they serve.
Crystal Collins-Camargo, Director of the SR QIC, had this to say about the initiative, "Many child welfare agencies have discovered that competing priorities have led their frontline supervisors to overemphasize administrative responsibilities and spend less time on educational, supportive, and clinical supervision. This initiative has demonstrated that by supervisors focusing on use of educational, supportive, and clinical techniques, positive organizational, practice, and client outcomes can be achieved. Enhancing supervision may well be the key to effectively responding to the challenges faced by public child welfare agencies today."
To learn more about the SRQIC, visit the website:
For more information, contact:
Crystal Collins-Camargo, Project Director
To read the earlier articles in the QIC series, go to:
- "Addressing Substance Abuse and Child Maltreatment: The RMQIC" (September 2007)
- "Promoting Cultural Competence and Collaboration: The Frontline Connections QIC" (October 2007)
- "A Success Model of Adoption: The QIC on Adoption" (November 2007)
- State Handbooks for Adoption
State Handbooks for Adoption
Adoption guides or handbooks are available in several States to assist prospective adoptive parents navigate the process of adoption. Handbooks for the States of Alaska, Illinois, Massachusetts, Missouri, New Hampshire, New Mexico, New York, Ohio, Oregon, and Vermont are now available online through the National Resource Center for Family-Centered Practice and Permanency Planning website. The handbooks give an overview of the adoption process in each State, provide answers to prospective parents, and in some cases include a list of State resources for adoption.
- National Conference on Substance Abuse, Child Welfare, and the Courts
National Conference on Substance Abuse, Child Welfare, and the Courts
Presentations from the National Conference on Substance Abuse, Child Welfare, and the Courts, "Putting the Pieces Together for Children and Families," are now available online. Conference information includes workshop PowerPoint presentations, a list of websites of participating exhibitors, and a comprehensive program booklet. Information on the preconference symposium, "Behavior and the Brain: Prevention and Early Intervention for Infants and Young Children," is also available online. Visit the National Center on Substance Abuse and Child Welfare for more information:
Or to see the conference website, visit:
- NRCOI Introduces a Systems of Care Curriculum
NRCOI Introduces a Systems of Care Curriculum
The National Child Welfare Resource Center (NRCOI) recently introduced comprehensive training materials to help stakeholders build systems of care for children and families in the child welfare system. Primer Hands On--Child Welfare is based on the premise that child welfare can provide leadership in engaging partners (including families themselves) to build a system of strategic alliances and provide wraparound services that meet the individualized needs of children and families.
The training materials include a skill-building curriculum, trainer's notes, PowerPoint slides, and a network for peer support and technical assistance. They incorporate real-world examples, a case method approach using system-building scenarios, peer exchange and teamwork, and ongoing coaching and support to build a network of system of care strategists. Training can take place over 2 full days or over a longer period organized around the 10 modules:
- Purpose and Organization of Primer Hands On--Child Welfare
- Context: System-Building Definitions, History, Values, Principles, and Characteristics
- Process and Structure in System Building
- Cross-Cutting, Nonnegotiable Characteristics: Family/Youth Partnership and Cultural/Linguistic Competence
- Planning, Governance, and System Management
- Outreach and Engagement, Organized Pathways to Service/Supports; Screening, Assessment, and Evaluation; and Service/Support Planning
- Service Array and Financing
- Provider Network, Natural Supports; Purchasing and Contracting
- Care Management, Utilization, and Quality Management
- Discussion of Other Functions (e.g., Human Resource Development, External and Internal Communication, Training and Technical Assistance, Listserv, etc.)
Flexibility in the curriculum allows jurisdictions to draw on the materials to meet their specific needs. For instance, a jurisdiction may use a portion of the curriculum to develop a child welfare system of care work plan for addressing a specific population's needs. States and Tribes interested in building their capacity to use systems of care may also access training and technical assistance from the Children's Bureau Training and Technical Assistance Network by first contacting their Regional Office for approval.
The curriculum was written by Sheila A. Pires, in partnership with Katherine J. Lazear and Lisa Conlan, and sponsored by the NRCOI, University of Southern Maine, in partnership with the National Technical Assistance Center for Children's Mental Health, Georgetown University, and the National System of Care Technical Assistance and Evaluation Center, Caliber/ICF, with funding from the Administration for Children and Families, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
Primer Hands On--Child Welfare is available on the NRCOI website:
The Children's Bureau's Technical Assistance and Evaluation Center for Systems of Care recently published two new guides on improving child welfare outcomes through systems of care. The guides can be downloaded from the Child Welfare Information Gateway website:
- Improving Child Welfare Outcomes Through Systems of Care: Systems of Care Guide for Strategic Planning provides information and materials on procedures any community can use to support the planning and development process for designing a system of care.
- Improving Child Welfare Outcomes Through Systems of Care: Building the Infrastructure: A Guide for Communities is designed for communities developing and implementing systems of care and outlines definitions, goals, activities, personnel, and expected outcomes for the fundamental components of the infrastructure needed to support systems of care.
- Information Gateway Enhanced Search
Information Gateway Enhanced Search
The Child Welfare Information Gateway website now features an improved search function, allowing users to easily locate resources among the website's extensive offerings. The new function operates like many popular search engines, offering a relatively intuitive search experience and delivering faster, more relevant results.
Child Welfare Information Gateway, a service of the Children's Bureau, provides access to print and electronic publications, websites, and online databases covering a wide range of topics from prevention to permanency, including child welfare, child abuse and neglect, adoption, and much more.
- Special Themes Coming to <i>Children's Bureau Express</i>
Special Themes Coming to <i>Children's Bureau Express</i>
Beginning with the next issue, an enhanced Children's Bureau Express will include a special focus or "theme" section each month, so that we can take a more comprehensive look at some of the pressing concerns in child welfare. The February 2008 issue will debut the new section with the theme "Family Engagement: What Works." Later issues will look at such themes as:
- Disproportionality in Child Welfare: The Case for Culturally Competent Practice
- National Child Abuse Prevention Month
- National Foster Care Month
- Disaster Preparedness
- Youth Permanency and the Shared Youth Vision
- CFSRs: What Are We Learning From Round Two?
- Substance Abuse and Child Welfare
- National Adoption Month
- Child Welfare Leadership: Strategies for Strengthening the Workforce
Each theme section will highlight resources and news pertaining to the topic. These might include programs, projects, funding opportunities, State or jurisdictional efforts, toolkits, books or journal articles, curricula, websites, training, and more. While the focus will be on more recent efforts, articles also may cover ongoing programs and resources with a track record of success.
If you know of a resource or program that might fit one of these themes, we'd love to hear your suggestions. Please send us an email:
Child Welfare Research
- Improving Collaboration Between Child Welfare and Education Systems
Improving Collaboration Between Child Welfare and Education Systems
Systemic factors in the child welfare and education systems and a lack of communication and trust between the two systems may affect the academic success of children and youth in the child welfare system. A new study published in the Journal of Public Child Welfare used interviews with child welfare and education stakeholders and foster parents in nine California counties to explore attributes of the two systems that affect foster children's academic performance. The study also sought to identify differences in workers' perceptions regarding the educational issues foster children face and the role of each system in addressing these issues.
According to the results, three major factors affect foster children's performance in school:
- Placement instability within the child welfare system: Multiple placements disrupt the continuity of education services and take an emotional toll that may affect the child's performance.
- Limited financial resources of schools: Schools are often unable to create an individualized education plan (IEP) in a timely manner and to provide appropriate services.
- Poor interagency communication: Issues include mistrust of actions and motives, misunderstanding of each other's systems, and poor coordination of services.
Based on the results of the study, the authors made the following recommendations to improve the experiences of foster children in the child welfare and education systems:
- Reduce the number of placements and keep the child in the same neighborhood to improve the continuity of education services.
- Track and monitor the child's educational needs and make the child's records more accessible.
- Encourage the involvement of someone like a court-appointed special advocate (CASA) to act as a consistent educational advocate for the child.
- Cross-train child welfare and education workers to understand both systems, including issues like the special education process and the unique needs of foster children.
"Educational Services for Children in Foster Care: Common and Contrasting Perspectives of Child Welfare and Education Stakeholders," by Susan Stone, Amy D'Andrade, and Michael Austin, is available in the Journal of Public Child Welfare, 1(2), 2007:
- New Child Protection Research Center
New Child Protection Research Center
The American Humane Association (AHA) is launching a new national child protection research center to operate under the leadership of John Fluke, Ph.D. The American Humane Center for Child Protective Services Research will address issues related to the improvement of public child protective services and will include the development of evidence-based policy and practices. Initial areas of focus will include:
- Assessment and decision-making processes in child welfare cases
- Examination of racial disproportionality in the child welfare system
- Development of ways to implement evidence-based intervention and treatment practices at agencies and community service providers
- Development of a global network of child abuse and neglect data-collection systems and professionals
Dr. Patricia Schene is joining the center as its first senior fellow.
- U.S. to Join the Hague Adoption Convention in December
U.S. to Join the Hague Adoption Convention in December
A message from the U.S. Department of State
The U.S. Department of State, Office of Children's Issues, is pleased to announce that the President signed the U.S. instrument of ratification of the Hague Adoption Convention on November 16. The legal requirements for ratification of the Hague Convention on Protection of Children and Co-operation in Respect of Intercountry Adoption (Hague Adoption Convention) have been completed, and the formal deposit of the instrument of ratification will take place on December 12, 2007! The Department will announce the official U.S. effective date—projected to be April 1, 2008—in the Federal Register. The Hague Adoption Convention protects children and their families against the risks of unregulated adoptions abroad and ensures that intercountry adoptions are made in the best interests of children. The Convention also serves to prevent the abduction of, sale of, or traffic in children.
Once the treaty is in force, the new processing requirements for Hague adoption cases will take effect for adoptions between the United States and more than 70 Convention members. The new process protects the rights of children, birth parents, and adoptive parents while promoting transparency, accountability, and ethical practices among adoption service providers.
The progress we have made toward joining this important Convention would not have been possible without the hard work and cooperation of the whole U.S. adoption community, including families, adoption service providers, and public servants who have helped us make our laws and regulations among the best in the world. The dedication of the adoption community to the improvement of intercountry adoption practices has been invaluable and is greatly appreciated. We can all be proud this December when Assistant Secretary Maura Harty deposits the U.S. instrument of ratification at The Hague. Congratulations to all who have helped make this possible!
For more information on intercountry adoptions and the Hague Adoption Convention, please visit the Intercountry Adoption page of the Department of State website:
- Assessing Readiness for a Privatized Child Welfare System
Assessing Readiness for a Privatized Child Welfare System
A new paper developed by the Child Welfare Privatization Initiative, Assessing Site Readiness: Considerations About Transitioning to a Child Welfare Privatized System, helps child welfare administrators consider key issues before making the transition to a privatized system of service delivery. The paper is organized around 12 questions that encourage agencies to explore the reasons why they are considering privatizing services and whether or not privatization will help them meet the goals of reduced costs and improved outcomes. Some of these questions include:
- What is the level of stakeholder support for privatization?
- Is there viable competition in the marketplace to deliver target services?
- Are roles and responsibilities clear between the public and private sectors?
- Will privatizing services alone bring about improved outcomes, or will the agency need to implement other reforms in tandem with privatization to improve systems performance?
This paper is the first in a series funded by the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. The project will produce five more technical assistance papers on a range of topics to provide insight on factors that should be considered when approaching or improving upon privatization efforts. Research is drawn from a number of sources, including the work conducted under the Quality Improvement Center on the Privatization of Child Welfare Services, funded by the Children's Bureau in 2005.
Assessing Site Readiness was written by Elizabeth Lee and Karl Ensign of Planning and Learning Technologies, Inc., in partnership with the Urban Institute, and is available online:
http://aspe.hhs.gov/hsp/07/CWPI/site/report.pdf (PDF - 185 KB)
Strategies and Tools for Practice
- Working With Urban American Indian Families
Working With Urban American Indian Families
The Denver Indian Family Resource Center has a 7-year history of helping American Indian families involved in the child welfare system in the Denver area. For more than 3 years, the Center developed and implemented a special project, in conjunction with the Rocky Mountain Quality Improvement Center, to provide services for American Indian families involved with the child welfare system and affected by drug and alcohol abuse. Drawing on these experiences, the Denver Indian Family Resource Center produced a resource guide for other practitioners who work with urban American Indian families in the child welfare system.
Working With Urban American Indian Families With Child Protection and Substance Abuse Challenges is divided into two sections. The first part focuses on providing the worker with relevant historical and contextual information, including information about Tribal affiliation and enrollment. Suggestions for engaging families are also included. The second section offers both system-level approaches and direct practice interventions to support successful outcomes for children and families. System-level approaches include:
- Early identification of American Indian children
- Training of child welfare staff
- Commitment to kinship placements and support for extended family systems
- Commitment to maintaining children's cultural connections
- Collaborative partnerships
Direct practice interventions include:
- Engagement with parents and caregivers that focuses on building relationships
- Culturally appropriate mental health and substance abuse assessment and treatment
- Intensive case management
- Wraparound teams and team decision-making meetings
One key to successful practice is the full commitment of child welfare staff at every level to working collaboratively with extended family members, community-based agencies, and other professionals who serve Indian families and Tribes. Examples of this collaboration are found in the appendix of the resource guide, which includes two scenarios to help workers visualize how they can best help families address these challenges.
The resource guide was written by Nancy M. Lucero and is available on the Rocky Mountain Quality Improvement Center website, a part of the American Humane website:
www.americanhumane.org/assets/pdfs/children/pc-rmqic-dif-guide.pdf (564 - KB)
Children's Bureau Express recently wrote about the Rocky Mountain Quality Improvement Center in "Addressing Substance Abuse and Child Maltreatment: The RMQIC" (September 2007).
- Supporting Kinship Caregivers With a National Network
Supporting Kinship Caregivers With a National Network
Kinship caregivers are an essential and growing part of the foster care system, but many need increased support to meet the needs of the children and youth in their care. A recent article in the Journal of Health and Social Policy describes a project designed to provide support to older relatives caring for children. Funded by the Children's Bureau and modeled after the Brookdale Foundation's Relatives As Parents Program, the KinNET (NET = Nurturing, Educating, and Teaching) demonstration project was a collaborative effort between Generations United, the Brookdale Foundation, and the Syracuse University School of Social Work that sought to create a national network of agencies and support groups to provide assistance to these overburdened caregivers.
The article describes the funding, organization, and evaluation of the KinNET project. Collaboration with 23 community organizations resulted in the creation of support groups in all 10 Federal Regions of the United States. Drawing from these groups, a sample of 102 caregivers completed evaluation surveys, providing information about themselves and the 226 children and youth in their care. Among the findings was the fact that only 6 percent were licensed to provide foster care and receive foster care payments.
Based on the survey results and other findings, researchers noted three broad lessons learned:
- Support groups and services for kinship caregivers must be flexible, since this is a diverse group with many burdens.
- Successful support groups need to provide easy access to services as well as an ongoing connection with relevant agencies. Providing child care, transportation, and onsite referral also promotes the success of these groups.
- Both licensed and unlicensed caregivers should be supported in the same groups.
The full article, "KinNET: A Demonstration Project for a National Support Network for Kinship Care Providers," by Carrie Jefferson Smith and Deborah J. Monahan, is available for purchase online:
- Child Abuse and Children With Disabilities
Child Abuse and Children With Disabilities
The New York State Office of Children and Family Services has developed a website for child welfare staff and others who work with children with disabilities who have been maltreated. The focus of the website is the Interviewing Strategies section, which incorporates general information, reference articles, points to consider, and video and audio clips to help professionals who interview children with different types of disabilities. Information on associated medical concerns and a listing of common jargon used in the field are also available.
- A Guide to Day-to-Day Survival for Young Adults
A Guide to Day-to-Day Survival for Young Adults
Older teens and young adults transitioning out of foster care and into adulthood face a wide range of questions and choices concerning employment, education, health, housing, personal finances, and many other everyday issues. Life in the Hood: Adulthood 101, the Orphan Foundation of America's new book for young adults transitioning into adulthood, provides practical knowledge and advice to help teens and young adults meet the challenges of life on their own.
Written with the input of hundreds of young adults living in foster care nationwide, the guide includes sections on day-to-day survival skills, such as finding housing, preparing food, using public transportation, managing personal finances, and staying fit. Life in the Hood also covers time management, career choices, strategies for studying, and tips for obtaining and accessing educational resources. A section on employment opportunities, internships, resume writing, interviewing with prospective employers, and on-the-job strategies is also included. Supplementing the text are various checklists and charts that serve as visual aids in the decision-making process.
To order a copy of Life in the Hood: Adulthood 101, by Tina Raheem, visit the Orphan Foundation of America's website:
www.orphan.org/fileadmin/pdf/OFA_Life_In_Hood_Sell_Sheet.pdf (PDF - 808 KB)
- AmeriCorps State and National Grant Competition
AmeriCorps State and National Grant Competition
Approximately $21 million will be awarded for AmeriCorps State and National grants to eligible organizations. The grants will fund the management of more than 1.8 million AmeriCorps members who will be trained to address community needs. Eligible applicants include State and local governments, many nonprofits, faith- and community-based organizations, Tribal governments, colleges and universities, and public housing authorities.
The deadline for applications is January 8, 2008.
- Crimes Against Children Research Center
Crimes Against Children Research Center
The Crimes Against Children Research Center (CCRC) aims to combat crimes against children by providing research and statistics to policymakers, law enforcement personnel, child welfare practitioners, and the general public. The CCRC website provides a variety of information and resources relating to the victimization of children, including survey instruments, survey results, and reports on topics ranging from the decline in sexual abuse cases to bullying, Internet crimes against juveniles, and juvenile prostitution.
The CCRC grew out of the Family Research Laboratory at the University of New Hampshire. Staff include internationally recognized experts in the field of child victimization and child welfare.
For more information or to sign up for the CCRC mailing list, visit:
- SAMHSA Grant Announcements
SAMHSA Grant Announcements
The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) has begun to post discretionary grant program announcements for FY 2008. These include Center for Mental Health Treatment and Center for Substance Abuse Treatment grants. Visit the website for further information and new announcements:
SAMHSA also is funding knowledge dissemination grants through the Conference Grant program. Funding is available to disseminate knowledge about practices within the mental health services and substance abuse prevention and treatment fields and to integrate that knowledge into real-world practice.
- NSCAW Reports on Special Health-Care Needs and Interventions
NSCAW Reports on Special Health-Care Needs and Interventions
The National Survey of Child and Adolescent Well-Being (NSCAW) has been collecting longitudinal data on child abuse and neglect since 1997, using firsthand information from victims, caregivers, and caseworkers to shed light on the short- and long-term effects of child maltreatment. Two new research briefs from NSCAW draw on years of data collection to focus on two populations involved with child welfare: children with special health-care needs and infants and toddlers in need of early interventions.
Special Health Care Needs Among Children in Child Welfare looks at child maltreatment victims who have chronic health conditions, special needs (e.g., autism, a learning disability, brain injury), or both. In this study, half of the children coming to the attention of the child welfare system for maltreatment were reported to have a chronic health condition or a special need or both over the course of 3 years. Children in out-of-home care had higher rates of these conditions than children in the general population. This report discusses the statistics as well as the need for early screening and treatment.
Need for Early Intervention Services Among Infants and Toddlers in Child Welfare reports that infants and toddlers in the child welfare system show higher rates of need for Part C early intervention services due to developmental delay or an established medical condition than do children in the general population. In this study, 35 percent of infants and toddlers were initially in need of these services, and those involved in unsubstantiated cases of child maltreatment showed an even higher need than those in substantiated cases. More broadly, the research brief examines who receives services and the impact of the Individual Family Service Plan.
View the reports on the NSCAW website:
- DiscussMeth Web Forum
DiscussMeth Web Forum
The DiscussMeth web forum was created by the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) to provide an online community for sharing information and resources, asking questions, and developing a sense of mission in the fight against methamphetamine use. Four general discussion forums are offered:
- General Meth Discussions
For additional information or to register online, visit the DiscussMeth web forum:
- Subsidized Guardianship Programs to Benefit Hispanic Children
Subsidized Guardianship Programs to Benefit Hispanic Children
As part of its "Uniting Generations to Support Children in Foster Care" project funded by The Pew Charitable Trusts, Generations United has issued a new report on subsidized guardianship arrangements for children in long-term relative foster care. The report supports the benefits of subsidized guardianship in providing permanency for these children, including a large number of Hispanic children who remain in State custody.
According to the report, more than one-third of all Hispanic children in foster care live with a relative. In most cases, these children are not able to make a quick exit out of the system due to a lack of permanency options, including subsidized guardianship programs that would allow the relative caregiver to continue to receive payments after assuming guardianship. For children for whom reunification or adoption is not possible, court-awarded guardianship to a relative caregiver has been found to be a viable option. Guardianship with relatives also affords the benefits of a family milieu that promotes cultural identification and continuity.
The report was the subject of a Congressional Hispanic Caucus briefing that took place on September 19, 2007. It can be viewed online in English and Spanish:
Training and Conferences
Find trainings, workshops, webinars, and other opportunities for professionals and families to learn about how to improve the lives of children and youth as well as a listing of upcoming events and conferences.
Upcoming national conferences on adoption and child welfare through April 2008 include:
- Society for Social Work and Research 12th Annual Conference
January 17–20, Washington, DC
- 22nd Annual San Diego International Conference on Child and Family Maltreatment
Chadwick Center for Children & Families
January 28–February 1, San Diego, CA
- Children 2008: A Call for Action—Leading the Nation for Children and Families
Child Welfare League of America
February 25–27, Washington, DC
- BACW 2008 Annual Conference
Listening and Responding to the Voices of Our Youth, Our Legacy
Black Administrators in Child Welfare
March 2–4, Baltimore, MD
http://www.blackadministrators.org/2008Conference.html (link no longer available)
- 9th Annual National Fatherhood & Families Conference 2008
The Fathers and Families Coalition, Inc.
March 4–7, Phoenix, AZ
- Annual AIA Conference
Strengthening Connections Between Parents and Children Affected by Substance Abuse, HIV, & Incarceration
National Abandoned Infants Assistance Resource Center
March 12–14, San Francisco, CA
http://aia.berkeley.edu/strengthening_connections/index.html (link no longer available)
- 24th National Symposium on Child Abuse
National Children's Advocacy Center
March 17–20, Huntsville, AL
- 26th Annual "Protecting Our Children" National American Indian Conference on Child Abuse and Neglect
National Indian Child Welfare Association
April 20–23, Minneapolis, MN
Further details about national and regional adoption and child welfare conferences can be found through the "Conference Calendar Search" feature on the Child Welfare Information Gateway website:
- Society for Social Work and Research 12th Annual Conference
- Training for Mentoring Organizations
Training for Mentoring Organizations
Health and Human Development Programs (HHD), a nonprofit organization based in Massachusetts, recently began the first federally funded training and technical assistance program in the country to assist mentoring organizations in reaching out to youth in the juvenile justice or foster care system. The program helps agencies that work directly with youth identify successful mentoring programs and determine how to expand those programs to reach court-involved youth.
Through extensive training and technical assistance and by developing products and services for national use, the program provides each site with up-to-date research and innovative practices geared toward the experiences and needs of these youth. HHD's Technical Assistance and Training Program for Mentoring System Involved Youth (T&TA Program) supports four demonstration sites working to enhance their mentoring programs by addressing the needs of these high-risk youth. The project is conducted in partnership with Aftercare for Indiana Through Mentoring and funded by the Federal Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention.
- Developing Organizational Effectiveness
Developing Organizational Effectiveness
A new report, The Organizational Effectiveness Institute: Lessons Learned in Implementing a Training Program for Human Services Leaders, examines the effectiveness of a multisession Workforce Development Institute designed by the American Public Human Services Association. The report describes the lessons learned in the process of training human services administrators to implement promising approaches to increase workforce capacity in their agencies.
The training was based on the premise that the quality of the frontline worker influences the effectiveness of the services that they deliver. To effectively perform their jobs, workers need to be well-trained and supported, have access to adequate resources, carry a reasonable workload, and be valued by their employers.
Participants were executives from nine human service agencies who met in four 2-day sessions over 13 months. After Session III, participants reported gains in such areas as human resource structure roles, performance measures, increased ownership of workforce capacity building, and worker recruitment and retention. Some of the specific activities that contributed to these successes included:
- Engaging retired executives as low-cost or free consultants
- Designating a staff member with a particular gift for problem-solving to serve as the human resource troubleshooter
- Bringing program executives into quarterly human resource meetings
- Piloting innovations in recruitment and retention and publicizing results
- Creating and distributing an employee orientation checklist
The report was prepared by the American Public Human Services Association with support from Cornerstones for Kids. The report is available online:
www.cornerstones4kids.org/images/APHSA_report_0907.pdf (PDF - 503 KB)