Foster Care as a Support to Families, Not a Substitute for Parents
The need for strong relationships with birth parents and parental support continues when a child enters foster care. Even when parents are unable to keep their children safe at home, parents can remain actively involved with their children in foster care in safe and healthy ways. These resources can provide agencies with information on developing family engagement and continuity of relationships for children in care.
(Available on CapLEARN; registration required)
- Quality Matters: Improving Caseworker Contacts With Children, Youth, and Families offers videos, discussion guides, and assessment tools that agencies can use to discover strategies for engaging families and including family voice in case planning, identifying elements of quality contacts, practicing self-assessment and action planning, and promoting effective supervisory conversations.
- Family Empowerment Leadership Academy e-learning modules provide foundational information on encouraging change through family empowerment, building meaningful partnerships, and providing peer-to-peer support to families.
- Achieving Placement Stability e-learning helps states and territories build their systems’ capacity to achieve placement stability for children in foster care.
Videos and Recorded Webinars With Discussion Guides
- Perspectives on Normalcy: Videos and Discussion Questions helps states and territories implement the reasonable and prudent parent standard (RPPS) by illustrating normalcy for children and youth in foster care and generating discussion about how to implement it.
- Authentic Voices Video Series: Sharing Our Perspective shares stories of foster and adoptive parents, children, youth, and professionals—focusing on themes of belonging, connection, development, and normalcy for children and youth in out-of-home care.
- It’s All Relative: Supporting Kinship Care Discussion Guides and Video Series illustrates the complex dynamics of family relationships and caregiver support needs through real-life stories of kinship caregivers.
- Empowering Caregivers, Strengthening Families Video Series demonstrates the importance of agency capacity and community and caregiver networks to strengthen families and achieve positive outcomes for children.
- Parent Partner Program Navigator: Designing and Implementing Parent Partner Programs in Child Welfare offers tools and resources for agencies to use to improve existing parent partner programs or design and implement new ones.
- Quality Matters: Improving Caseworker Contacts With Children, Youth, and Families series supports child welfare agencies and contracted service providers in building capacity to conduct quality contacts between caseworkers and children, youth, parents, and resource parents.
- Youth Engagement Blueprint series builds capacity for promoting a culture and climate that encourages youth engagement at all levels of an organization.
- Having the Normalcy Conversation series describes the importance of normalcy for children and youth in foster care and provides guidance for facilitating a normalcy conversation.
- Embracing a Youth Welfare System: A Guide to Capacity Building presents guidance and examples to illustrate the Youth Welfare approach for working with youth in foster care, including strategies to support family and youth engagement.
- Helping LGBTQ Families Navigate the Child Welfare System provides information about creating an agency organizational culture that is inclusive and knowledgeable about the unique needs of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and questioning (LGBTQ) children, youth, and families.
- Considerations for LGBTQ Children and Youth in Foster Care: Exploring Normalcy as It Relates to P.L. 113–183 presents information related to the normalcy needs of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and questioning children and youth.
- Toolkit to Support Child Welfare Agencies in Serving LGBTQ Children, Youth, and Families helps states and territories adapt their policies and practices to meet the growing needs of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and questioning (LGBTQ) children, youth, and families in the child welfare system.
The following peer groups can help connect child welfare professionals working on family engagement and continuity of relationships for children in foster care. Visit the Center’s Current Peer Groups page for more information or to sign up for a peer group.
- Visit the Center’s Events page to learn about upcoming events focused on building family engagement and maintaining continuity of relationships.
The Center also offers tailored services to states and jurisdictions to help build agency capacity for prevention programs. For more information, contact your State Liaison.