ACF awards $2 million for Diligent Recruitment of Families for Children in the Foster Care System

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
Monday, October 18, 2010
Contact: Kenneth J. Wolfe
(202) 401-9215

The Administration on Children, Youth and Families (ACYF) Children’s Bureau (CB) within the Administration for Children and Families (ACF) announced today the award of $2 million, as cooperative agreements over a five year period, to states, tribes and territories to develop comprehensive multi-faceted recruitment programs and services for resource families, including kinship, foster, concurrent and adoptive families for children and youth served by public child welfare agencies as a means to promote the safety, permanency and well-being of children and families.

“Our goal is to increase the number of children adopted from foster care and improve the efforts to eliminate those adoption barriers that continue to keep our children from being in a permanent, loving and stable home,” said David A. Hansell, acting assistant secretary for children and families.

Grantees will develop and implement a national adoption and foster care data gathering and analysis system; a national adoption information exchange system and adoption training and technical assistance program; work to increase the placements in adoptive families for children of color who are in the foster care system and have the goal of adoption, with a special emphasis on recruitment of families of color who are from communities representative of the children in care and provide adoption services for families who have adopted children with special needs, including day treatment and respite care.

Grants being awarded today include:

Texas Department of Family and Protective Services, Austin, TX: The Texas Permanency and Family Resource Development Model project is a collaboration among the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services (DFPS), Texas Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) and Child Trends. These three agencies will target three specific regions in Texas for diligent recruitment efforts.
Michigan State Department of Human Services, Lansing, MI: This grantee will carry out the I-CARE 365 (The Inter-Agency Community Adoption/Foster Family Recruitment Exchange) project, targeting teens and youth placed in psychiatric facilities, residential care settings and juvenile sexual offenders for diligent recruitment efforts as well as children who are over-represented in care, including children with disabilities, African Americans and large sibling groups.
New Mexico Children, Youth and Families Department, Santa Fe, New Mexico: The New Mexico Children, Youth and Families Department will partner with the Adoption Exchange in the Step Up! Diligent Recruitment project to target seven transformation zones, including urban, rural and frontier population areas for comprehensive diligent recruitment services.
Los Angeles County Department of Children and Families Services, Los Angeles, CA: The Collaborative Strategies for Diligent Recruitment project of Los Angeles, CA will target older African American and Latino youth, deaf youth, youth on probation and Lesbian/Gay/Bisexual/Transgender/Questioning youth for comprehensive diligent recruitment permanency activities.
Mississippi Department of Human Services, Jackson, MS: The Mississippi Department of Human Services will carry out the Diligent Recruitment of Families for Children in the Foster Care System project targeting children in care who wait longest for permanency, including large sibling groups, sexually abused/acting out children, pregnant foster teens who plan to keep their babies with them, teenagers, and children with physical, medical, intellectual, emotional, or severe behavioral challenges.
Illinois Department of Children and Family Services, Chicago, IL:  The Illinois Department of Children and Family Services will carry out the Recruitment and Kin Connections project to target youth ages 14 and older in Cook County as well as children entering into temporary custody in Cook and Champaign counties in a collaborative approach to comprehensive diligent recruitment services.
Clark County Department of Family Services, Las Vegas, NV: Clark County Department of Family Services will carry out the Permanent Families and Lasting Connections project targeting children and youth with special health care needs for multi-faceted diligent recruitment activities.
“There is a dramatic need to develop more effective programs in support of placing children and youth with families who can provide permanent family connections and relationships,” said Bryan Samuels, Commissioner, Administration on Children, Youth and Families.

Recruitment toolkits, resource guides, tips for professionals and other publications are available at http://www.adoptuskids.org/resourceCenter/atcPublications.aspx.

For more information regarding resources, techniques, and approaches used by various organizations and The Collaboration to AdoptUsKids to recruit potential foster/adoptive parents visit http://www.childwelfare.gov/outofhome/resourcefam/fosteradopt/recruiting....

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