Agencies & Courts: Putting Families Front and Center Videos and Discussion Guide - Center for States - Child Welfare Capacity Building Collaborative Skip to main content

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Capacity Building


Agencies & Courts: Putting Families Front and Center Videos and Discussion Guide

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Watch the two videos and do the activities in the discussion guide to get multiple perspectives and better understand family court experiences in child welfare.

When children must be removed from their families, reunification is the primary goal. Family-centered practice and multidisciplinary approaches are essential, interrelated strategies that can help a community meet this goal. When agency and court staff collaborate to create a shared vision for child welfare with other stakeholders, they can better support and prioritize reunification.

The videos and activities in the discussion guide can be vehicles for bringing agency and court staff together, building mutual understanding, and sparking change across the child welfare system.

Assembled teams and individuals can learn to put families first by engaging child welfare system stakeholders, court and agency leaders, frontline staff, Court Improvement Program staff, parents' attorneys, parents, children's attorneys, and youth to discuss common challenges and develop solutions. Modeling a multidisciplinary approach can help build an agency and court culture that puts families front and center.

The two videos offer multiple perspectives to describe a family’s court experience in child welfare.

It Takes a Village: Collaboration Is Key to Supporting Families

Mosaic 1: It Takes a Village: Collaboration Is Key to Supporting Families

Highlights the impact of a family court’s compassionate and strength-based approach to supporting families. It offers the perspectives of a mother, father, child protective services worker, parent attorney, child advocate, family services program manager, and judge in Mississippi.

When a Team Partners With a Parent

Mosaic 2: When a Team Partners With a Parent

Examines how interactions with families shape outcomes and emphasizes themes of trust, respect, and a team approach. The mosaic features a New York agency’s court interdisciplinary team and the perspectives of a mother, parent attorney, social worker, and parent advocate.

How Can I Use Family Mosaic Activities?

Child Welfare Program Managers or Supervisors
Use the resources for one-on-one coaching and in team meetings, focusing on the impact of trusting relationships and team approaches. Teams can identify strategies that promote family-centered, strength-based practice and coordinated supports.

Court Improvement Program Coordinators or Court Personnel
Use the videos and activities to gain insight into court strategies that emphasize multidisciplinary support for families.

Training Managers
Integrate the videos and activities into preservice or in-service training for child welfare workers or cross-system training of court and child welfare personnel.

Interested in Earning Continuing Education Credits?

We are pleased to offer social work, clinical psychology, counseling, and marriage and family therapy continuing education units (CEUs) with this learning experience. After completing activities in the discussion guide, you may purchase CEUs at the R. Cassidy Seminars website.

* Note: The CEU sponsor, R Cassidy Seminars, maintains responsibility for its CEU program. For more information on the licensing program and requirements, please visit its website.

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