December Infórmate

Secretary Califano and Vice President Mondale swear in Dr. Cardenas as ACYF commissioner and Children’s Bureau chief

Pictured left to right: the 12th U.S. Secretary of Health, Education, and Welfare, Joseph Califano and Vice President Walter Mondale swear in Dr. Blandina Cardenas as commissioner of the new ACYF and chief of the Children’s Bureau on August 4, 1977. (Photo courtesy of Blandina Cardenas).

Children's Bureau Launches Historical E-Book

The Children's Bureau's History of Inclusion and Diversity


The Children’s Bureau, the first national government agency dedicated to addressing the needs of children and families, celebrated its 100th anniversary in 2012. As part of this celebration, the Bureau published The Children's Bureau Legacy: Ensuring the Right to Childhood, an e-book that shares the Bureau’s history and efforts on behalf of all children in the United States, including its work for and with Latino children, families, and communities.

A young Mexican boy works in the sugar beet fields near Lincoln County, NE, ca. 1938. (Library of Congress, LC-USF34-008764-D)From its inception, the Children’s Bureau recognized the diverse needs of the populations it serves and sought to provide inclusive services and programs. Some of the Bureau’s earliest studies included surveys of the conditions of children of Mexican descent working as agricultural laborers, and its initiatives under the Sheppard-Towner Act of 1921 included the distribution of translated educational literature to non-English-speaking communities.

After the rise of Cuban dictator Fidel Castro in 1959, the Bureau worked with states on planning the implementation of a federal assistance program for unaccompanied Cuban refugee children sent to the United States by parents trying to ensure their safety and freedom. By 1966, approximately 8,000 of the more than 13,000 unaccompanied children had received foster care and adoption services through the program.

The Bureau also has a history of chiefs with strong interest in multicultural issues. Dr. Blandina Cardenas, chief from 1977 to 1979 and a specialist in multicultural and bilingual education programs for minority children, helped further the decade’s focus on foster care issues and the importance of strong families to children’s well-being.

Today, the Bureau continues to support Latino children and families. AdoptUSKids and Child Welfare Information Gateway, both services of the Children’s Bureau, provide information and services in Spanish and English. AdoptUSKids hosts a Spanish-language Visit disclaimer page website for foster and adoptive families. Information Gateway features Spanish-language publications Visit disclaimer page on many child welfare-related topics, as well as a Spanish-English glossary Visit disclaimer page of child welfare terms.

To learn more about the Children’s Bureau’s first 100 years of work on behalf of all children, read The Children's Bureau Legacy: Ensuring the Right to Childhood Visit disclaimer page .

(Photo: A young Mexican boy works in the sugar beet fields near Lincoln County, NE, ca. 1938. (Library of Congress, LC-USF34-008764-D)



Photo of former Head Start Director Yvette Sanchez Fuentes

Head Start Director Departs

It was with a heavy heart that we said goodbye to Yvette Sanchez Fuentes who resigned from her position as Director of the Office of Head Start on Nov. 22.

Yvette was appointed to Director of Office of Head Start (OHS) in October 2009 after a long history with Head Start. Starting from her days as a Head Start Fellow, to her time as Executive Director of the National Migrant Head Start Association, and finally to leading OHS, Yvette is the definition of a leader from the grassroots who truly embodies the heart of Head Start.

Upon arriving at OHS, Yvette put her skills in policy to work in designing what would become several of the most significant reforms in the history of Head Start. Driven by a relentless passion to help the youngest and most vulnerable in our country, Yvette and her team launched a reform agenda that is bold, innovative, and built on the best evidence available. The reforms are designed to ensure that every child and family who walks through a Head Start door receives the quality early experiences they deserve, in a safe, enriching, and empowering environment. As President Obama said, “Children that have the chance to go to the best Head Start programs have an experience that can literally change their lives for years to come.” Over the past four years, Yvette and her team worked tirelessly to make sure that every Head Start child gets that chance. All the while, they made sure Head Start families were front and center in their children’s early education, serving as true partners. Her legacy will be the continuous quality improvement of Head Start programs across this country for years to come and the benefits children and families will reap because of it.

I am proud to have worked with Yvette during her tenure and wish her well as she takes some well-deserved time to be with her family. Being the voice of the nearly one million Head Start children and families across the country does not come without personal sacrifice. The day President Obama announced Head Start’s historic reforms, Yvette had to miss her son Alejandro’s birthday – luckily, President Obama signed his birthday card on Air Force One. Thanks to Yvette’s vision, hard work, and sacrifices, the Head Start families of America are better off.

- Linda K. Smith, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Early Childhood



Health Care Reform is more than just a website. There are four basic ways you can apply for and enroll in Marketplace coverage:



FYSB Recruiting Grant Reviewers for 2014 Reviews

The Family and Youth Services Bureau, or FYSB, is currently recruiting individuals who can serve as reviewers and/or chairpersons for the 2014 discretionary grant reviews. Individuals selected will be responsible for evaluating grant applications and assisting FYSB in selecting the best programs for funding.

To submit an application or update an existing profile, please visit Visit disclaimer page .

Potential reviewers must submit a writing sample in response to FYSB’s selection criteria. Returning reviewers with a completed profile and writing sample in the Administration for Children and Families Grant Operations (ACFGO) database, must also complete a new writing sample. The writing sample question is contained within the following link: Visit disclaimer page .

Please note:

  • Previous grant reviewer selection does not guarantee future reviewer participation
  • Reviewer selection is at the discretion of FYSB program staff and is based on the applicant's knowledge and experience in the runaway and homeless youth field
  • Reviewers who have submitted applications for fiscal year 2014 FYSB funding, or have a conflict of interest (i.e., personal or financial interest in an applicant organization), including those who are FYSB contractors/sub-contractors, are not eligible.

Questions should be directed to the Reviewer Information toll free line at (866) 796-1613, or send an email to: Visit disclaimer page .


Child Maltreatment 2012 Report CoverFewer Child Abuse and Neglect Victims for Sixth Consecutive Year

The number of children suffering abuse and maltreatment has dropped nationwide for the sixth consecutive year, according to a report from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Administration for Children and Families. The report estimates there were 686,000 cases of child abuse or neglect across the country in 2012. While this indicates a steady decrease since 2007, when there were approximately 723,000 reports of abuse, it also serves as a reminder that there is more work still to be done. Read more about the annual report.





Head Start students at the lunch table in Madera County.Head Start Brings Healthy Beverages to Madera County Kids

See how Head Start is helping combat the problem of childhood obesity in California’s Central Valley. More than 44 percent of children in Madera County, Calif., are obese or overweight. Overweight preschoolers are five times as likely as average-weight children to be overweight or obese as adults, increasing their likelihood of developing chronic illnesses like Type 2 diabetes and heart disease.





Family Violence Division

One in four women will be a victim of severe physical violence by an intimate partner at some point in their lifetime. The Family Violence Division within the Family and Youth Services Bureau at ACF administers the Family Violence Prevention and Services Act (FVPSA), the primary federal funding stream dedicated to the support of emergency shelter and related assistance for victims of domestic violence and their children. Last week the program joined forces with the Office of Women’s Health and the National Institutes of Health to host a historic discussion of the research needed to better recognize and serve women who have experienced intimate partner violence (IPV). The Intimate Partner Violence Screening & Counseling Research Symposium Visit disclaimer page brought together the country’s top clinical researchers, medical practitioners, domestic violence experts and policy makers to examine the current state of the science, highlight best practices, and identify research gaps that need to be addressed in order to advance the health sector’s response to IPV. Read more about the work being done.



ACF programs have a variety of funding opportunities available to support social service programming at the state, local and tribal levels. Our grantees include:

  • Non-profit Organizations
  • For-profit Organizations
  • Government
  • Educational Organizations
  • Public Housing Groups

ACF funds an array of activities that support the economic and social well-being of people throughout the country. Find out which ACF grants are available today: Funding Opportunities. To learn how to apply for a grant, view this guide to resources for community and faith-based organizations. To learn how to become a grant reviewer, view the ACF Grant Review Guide. To learn more about grant and funding opportunities within the individual ACF programs, visit these links:

New Grants

Transitional Living Program and Maternity Group Homes: The Family and Youth Services Bureau (FYSB), through the Transitional Living Program (TLP) and Maternity Group Homes (MGH), provides an alternative to involving RHY in the law enforcement, child welfare, mental health and juvenile justice systems. Each TLP must provide a safe and appropriate shelter for up to 21 months of services with adult supervision, life and interpersonal skills building, career counseling and job skills, counseling, and medical care as appropriate. MGHs provide the same services as a TLP in addition to providing parenting instructions and child care. Other services that are offered include, but are not limited to, transportation, family planning, abstinence education and pregnancy prevention services. Deadline: Jan. 15, 2014. Apply today: Visit disclaimer page



Interested in Working with ACF?

ACF is working hard to enhance the cultural competency of the agency, its employees and its contractors. One sure way to reach that goal is to hire more people from diverse backgrounds. We are committed to increasing diversity in the ACF workforce. Please visit Visit disclaimer page and search for vacancies in the Administration for Children and Families within the Health and Human Services Department.

ACF Job Openings:

HHS Job Openings:

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Thank you for taking the time to learn about ACF opportunities. For more information, or to sign up a new recipient for Infόrmate, contact Special Assistant Jesus Garcia in the ACF Office of Public Affairs at Visit disclaimer page . For past issues, click on this link: Infόrmate.

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