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The Center for States designs products, services, and learning experiences to increase understanding and awareness, and build knowledge and skills. The Center focuses its attention on developing products and resources on several core organizational and practice topics.

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The Center for States provides research assistance and responds to information requests on building capacity in child welfare.

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Showing 1 - 15 of 22 resources
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Frankie is 14 years old and lives with his sister, brothers, and moms. He and his sister were adopted when they were 2 years old and 4 years old, respectively. He loves spending time with his aunts, uncles, and cousins and loves being part of a big family.

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Learn about negotiating boundaries, communication, support, and normalcy from a young person formally in foster care and her adoptive parents.

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Explore the supportive relationship between a youth and her attorney.

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Reveals how advocating for youth makes a difference in system change and in the advocates’ own lives. The Director of Policy and Advocacy at NMCAN and a youth advocate talk about their shared experience in testifying as expert witnesses for state legislative committees and how it created a strong bond between them.

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Shares Stephen’s story about being a community-based provider and policymaker in Florida, the need for laws that empower caregiver decision-making, creating Florida’s reasonable and prudent parent standard (RPPS), and the effect RPPS and normalcy laws can have on foster care.

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Highlights the advocacy work of state and regional youth leadership councils. Two paid regional and state youth specialists and the Texas Director for Transitional Living Services describe how including youth voice by providing them a “seat at the table” at the state capital enhances the child welfare system. All three discuss the rewards and personal impact of their work.

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Hear a first-hand account of a kinship and adoptive mother raising her nephew, fulfilling roles as both aunt and primary caregiver.

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Hear about the challenges and successes and how Donaniece is teaching her grandson the meaning of family.

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Shares Molene’s story about becoming the primary caregiver for her four nieces, raising them, adopting them, negotiating the child welfare system, and creating a family.

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Bruce and Brenda have been married for 33 years and have four daughters. From 2006 to 2009, they provided a kinship placement for their four grandchildren. In 2010, the couple adopted Bruce (now 18 years old), Tre’Nae (now 15 years old), Mason (now 13 years old), and Kiaunna (now 10 years old).

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Tells the story of the relationship between a youth in foster care and a BraveLife peer navigator. Both talk about the personal sharing and mutual trust that have forged a connection that will last a lifetime.

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See how listening and relatability helped build trust between a youth and his attorney.

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Underscores the importance of consistency and encouragement in trusting relationships. A Fostering Success peer mentor gave impactful advice to the youth she mentored: Stop listening to the people who don’t believe in you.

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Hear from a family about the challenges of dealing with an autism diagnosis and other issues while navigating the child welfare system.

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Demonstrates how showing up and listening are foundational to developing a nourishing relationship with youth. A young woman describes the constant support she and her family received from a social worker as she evolved from a youth into a teen mom and an advocate.