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Child Welfare

Foster Youth Questival 2015

Daniel Heimpel | Posted 06.26.2015 | Impact
Daniel Heimpel

After four years, and taking dozens of novice climbers up Mt. Shasta, I know that I have helped to impart a little beauty into those lives. And to know that beauty, calm and sense of accomplishment lives on without me makes it all worth it.

Tackling Childhood Trauma in DC Schools

Judith Sandalow | Posted 06.24.2015 | DC
Judith Sandalow

Think about a time when you were a child and heard a strange sound in the middle of the night. Your heart probably started beating faster. Every little noise was amplified because of a heightened sense of hearing. You got tunnel vision.

Six Things You Should Know About Growing up in Foster Care

Mary Lee | Posted 06.17.2015 | Impact
Mary Lee

Foster kids are just kids -- like your kids. But they've experienced more difficult situations and hard times than most adults ever will. Some develop emotional and behavioral problems and challenging behaviors.

End All Youth Detention and Torture at Rikers Island Now

Marian Wright Edelman | Posted 06.13.2015 | Politics
Marian Wright Edelman

Nobody of any age should be held in jail without a trial for three years. No child or adolescent should be held in an adult jail. Yet, a 16-year-old accused of stealing a backpack was kept in one of the most violent adult jails in the United States, Rikers Island in New York City, for three years without a trial. This was morally scandalous and inhumane. Even worse, he spent more than two years of that time in solitary confinement, locked up alone except to go to the shower, the recreation area, the visit room or the medical clinic. This was torture. The suicide of 22-year-old Kalief Browder on June 6, barely two years after his release and return home, was the final horror in his tragic and brutal journey into the depths of the adult criminal justice system in New York.

Children Are in Need of Families, and You May Be the Perfect Fit

Rita Soronen | Posted 06.10.2015 | Impact
Rita Soronen

There are many ways to help make a difference, but the most direct and surest way to make a profound, life-changing impact in the life of a child who has experienced abuse or neglect is to adopt a waiting child from the foster care system.

6 Tools to Help Protect Children from Sexual Abuse

Stacey Steinberg | Posted 06.05.2015 | Parents
Stacey Steinberg

In light of the Duggar abuse scandal, protecting children from sexual abuse is on many parents' minds. Avoiding all risk is unlikely, but there are steps parents can take to minimize their child's risk of sexual abuse. These tools will also help children get help if victimization occurs.

We Can Save Foster Children Only by Educating Them

Bill Baccaglini | Posted 05.27.2015 | Education
Bill Baccaglini

When President Obama recognized May 2015 as National Foster Care Month, his Proclamation honored "those who dedicate themselves to making a difference." As the month draws to a close, those of us working in the foster care trenches need to take a hard look at where we are still failing these children.

Every Kid Needs a Family

Patrick McCarthy | Posted 05.26.2015 | Impact
Patrick McCarthy

By definition, the young people who come into our child welfare systems already have suffered the trauma of family disruption. Without family, children are ill equipped to beat the odds stacked against them. Every kid needs a family, and every kid deserves one.

Red Noses for Kids: The Fight to End Childhood Poverty...in America

Cara H. Drinan | Posted 05.21.2015 | Crime
Cara H. Drinan

It's easy to forget that childhood poverty is a devastating reality in the United States. A few years ago, in a New Yorker article entitled "Spoiled Rotten," Elizabeth Kolbert wrote: "contemporary American kids may represent the most indulged young people in the history of the world." Evidence of that claim is all around us.

To the Heroes Advocating on Behalf of Abused Children

Stacey Steinberg | Posted 05.15.2015 | Impact
Stacey Steinberg

Please remember that you change lives every single day. You see things most 'regular people' pretend don't exist. You nurture broken hearts by day and fall asleep at night wishing only that you could have done more.

Second Day of Summit

Deborah De Santis | Posted 05.12.2015 | Impact
Deborah De Santis

The CSH Summit: Supportive Housing Innovations is in its second day here in Chicago and the intensity surrounding the discussions has taken our learning and sharing to a whole new level.

To Grandma's House We Go... and Stay

Donna M. Butts | Posted 05.08.2015 | Impact
Donna M. Butts

She was six years old when she left home on her bike with a suitcase she packed with clothes and another filled with toys. To grandma's house she went. But this was no picnic. And the big, bad wolf? He was a father fueled by alcohol.

All in the Family

Marian Wright Edelman | Posted 05.01.2015 | Politics
Marian Wright Edelman

Kinship care has been found to help children maintain family, and oftentimes community, connections. There is strong evidence that children placed in kinship care experience greater stability, have fewer behavioral problems and are just as safe children in non-relative care.

Stuck Outside the Poor Door

Marian Wright Edelman | Posted 06.24.2015 | Politics
Marian Wright Edelman

The contrast between the haves and have-nots might be especially stark at that New York building, but millions of families across the country are finding themselves on the wrong side of the poor door.

Child Welfare Leaders Turn to Supportive Housing

Deborah De Santis | Posted 06.21.2015 | Politics
Deborah De Santis

The New Jersey Department of Children and Families embraced the Keeping Families Together (KFT) supportive housing model to change the trajectory of some struggling families. KFT is a model of supportive housing designed specifically for child-welfare-involved families. KFT is all about improving child well-being and decreasing family separations.

Angel Enters Foster Care Through Probation's Door

Daniel Heimpel | Posted 06.20.2015 | Impact
Daniel Heimpel

In the foster care system, it has long been recognized that to cut all aid at age 18 was to invite poor outcomes with disproportionately high numbers of foster youth experiencing homelessness, incarceration and diminished educational opportunity.

The 10 Most Surprising Things About Foster Care

Dawn Teo | Posted 06.15.2015 | Parents
Dawn Teo

Trust me when I tell you that there are foster families all around you. Foster families go to your church. Foster children go to school with your children. Foster children are on your children's sports teams. Your children are friends with them, but they don't know they are foster children.

The Truth About Foster Parents and Foster Children

Madeleine Melcher | Posted 06.07.2015 | Parents
Madeleine Melcher

I have been many things in many life and a foster child and adoptee are just two of them, but I do know that without those who loved and cared for me, I would not be where I am or who I am today. For that, I will forever be grateful.

Kamala Harris' Bureau of Children's Justice Takes Shape

Daniel Heimpel | Posted 05.04.2015 | Impact
Daniel Heimpel

On Feb. 12, California Attorney General Kamala Harris held a press conference in Los Angeles to announce the creation of a "Bureau of Children's Justice" with goals ranging from reducing truancy and combatting "childhood trauma" to improving the foster care and juvenile justice systems.

No ESEA Bill Is Better Than One That Fails to Protect the Poorest Children

Marian Wright Edelman | Posted 04.22.2015 | Politics
Marian Wright Edelman

For fifty years Title I of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 1965 (ESEA) has been the primary source of federal funding targeted to schools to serve poor children. Sadly, from the beginning states didn't keep their end of the bargain.

How Science Can Help Us Measure and Improve the Well Being of Foster Youth

Michael Piraino | Posted 04.21.2015 | Impact
Michael Piraino

The three key goals of child welfare policy in the United States are the child's safety, permanency and well-being. Of these three goals, the child's well-being often seems to be the most elusive goal.

10 Things Adoptive Parents Should Know (An Adoptee's Perspective)

Christina Romo | Posted 04.20.2015 | Parents
Christina Romo

Adoption is not possible without loss. Losing one's birth parents is the most traumatic form of loss a child can experience. That loss will always be a part of me. It will shape who I am and will have an effect on my relationships -- especially my relationship with you.

Improving Child Welfare: Why Community-Based Prevention Must be Part of the Reform Equation

Jacquelyn McCroskey | Posted 04.05.2015 | Los Angeles
Jacquelyn McCroskey

While it's the job of CPS to determine when maltreatment occurs and to respond accordingly, it's everyone's job to prevent child abuse and maltreatment before it happens. It's an enormous task, but one well worth doing for the future of L.A.'s children.

The Voiceless in a Failing System

Matt Hartman | Posted 03.29.2015 | Impact
Matt Hartman

In this country, the plights of youth in the foster care system are often brought to attention in the abstract, with former foster parents or social workers commenting on the difficulties and the problems of the system. Yet, the voice lacking is that of the youth who experience the system.

Building A Child-Friendly DC, Part 1

Judith Sandalow | Posted 03.25.2015 | DC
Judith Sandalow

How can DC's new and returning leaders move forward? The questions to answer are: what does a child-friendly city look like? And, what specifically can the government do to make more progress for all children?