About the Center for Courts

Who We Are

The Capacity Building Center for Courts (Center for Courts), part of the Children's Bureau's Child Welfare Capacity Building Collaborative (Collaborative), is a partnership of the American Bar Association (ABA), the National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges (NCJFCJ), the National Association of Counsel for Children (NACC), Public Knowledge, and Westat. Our staff includes attorneys and social scientists with a wide range of knowledge and skills in child welfare systems change and innovation.

A man siting on a sofa with a girl on his lap reading.


The Center for Courts designs and delivers publications and resources to expand understanding, increase awareness, and build knowledge and skills around legal and judicial practice.

What We Do

The Center for Courts works to improve child safety, permanency, and well-being outcomes for families by ensuring that courts work in partnership with child welfare agencies to best serve children and families.

We create integrated capacity building plans that engage Court Improvement Programs (CIPs) in system improvement, provide direct support to CIPs, and offer learning opportunities and resources to elevate legal and judicial practice nationwide.

Our Services

The Center for Courts offers the following services:

  • Providing coaching and consultation to help jurisdictions assess their needs, improve performance, and achieve better outcomes for children and families. (Contact your State Liaison for more information)
  • Developing and disseminating products and online learning courses on a variety of topics to increase awareness, understanding, and engagement among a broad audience of legal and judicial professionals across the country
  • Supporting and facilitating peer networking opportunities to enhance knowledge, skills, and relationships among groups of professionals and peers

Connect with Us

Email: Jennifer.Renne@americanbar.org
Phone: 202-662-1731

Learn About the Collaborative’s Capacity-Building Approach

Capacity building is an ongoing, evidence-informed process that helps create a productive and effective child welfare system to better serve all children, youth, and families. 

Read the following publications to learn more about capacity building at the Collaborative:

Man in wheelchair with mask showing a tablet to a girl wearing a mask