The Front Lines of Children’s Mental Health: Coordinated Care

This is part one of a two-part look at mental health services mandated by the settlement of Katie A. v Bonta, a class-action lawsuit brought against the State of California over its lack of community-based mental health services for youths.

Michael’s biological parents were working hard to get him back, but they needed more time. Meanwhile, his foster parents were ready to call his social worker and ask that the department place him somewhere else. …

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#ChildWelfare, #FosterCare, #Suicide

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Preventing Child Abuse and Neglect

What if we knew how to prevent children and youth from engaging in risky and self-destructive behaviors?  What if we can use scientific research to identify those factors that work and then could replicate success?  In 2009, the National Research Council and the Institute of Medicine issued a report: Preventing Mental, Emotional, and Behavioral Disorders among Young People: Progress and Possibilities that change the thinking of researchers and policymakers about behavioral health.  It launched a new era of prevention research and we are beginning to see the dividends today.  Policymakers are now looking for ways to prevent as well as treat social problems. …

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#BehavioralHealth, #ChildWelfare, #Employment, #Research, #Work

Hundreds of Orgs Ask for Extension of Federal Program for Young Mothers

Written by John Kelly

Senate and House leadership received a letter today, signed by 750 organizations and local politicians, urging them to maintain a federal program meant to assist struggling young mothers and mothers-to-be.

The Home Visiting Coalition asked leaders in the letter to fund the ……

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#Atrisk, #Child, #ChildWelfare, #Children, #Education, #Federal, #Health, #House, #Research

Growing Number of Homeless Children is Shameful

A troubling new report released recently by the National Center on Family Homelessness at the American Institutes for Research documents the growing distress among the nation’s children.  More children are sliding further into poverty and experiencing homelessness.  Using data from the Department of Education and the Census Department—researchers led by Ellen Bassuk found that one in 30—or 2.5 million American children—were homeless at some point last year.  That represents an eight percent increase nationally from 2012.  They found child homelessness increased in 31 states and the District of Columbia and that the problem exists in every state, every city and every county in America.  We know that outcomes for children experiencing homelessness are disastrous.  We know that this growing problem does not get solved by the mothers of these children just doing the right thing. …

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#ChildWelfare, #Children, #Homeless, #MacroSocialWork, #SocialWork

Alliance Will Try to Be “In” Washington without Being “Of” Washington

Written By John Kelly

At 9:08 a.m. on Wednesday morning, Alliance for Children and Families CEO Susan Dreyfus told the 500-plus at her national conference that the Alliance push for federal child welfare finance reform wouldn’t be some inside job.

“We’re not doing it the old fashioned way, where we go inside the Beltway and think we’re gonna move it inside out,” Dreyfus said. “We’re moving it from the outside in.”…

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#ChildWelfare, #Children

The Real Value of AmeriCorps

Written by Judith Fenlon

In 1993, President Bill Clinton signed the National Community Service Trust Act, which created the AmeriCorps program. In 1994, the first class of 20,000 AmeriCorps members began serving in more than 1,000 communities nationwide. Twenty years later, there are still people committing a year to national service.

I entered the program in November 2001, a recent college graduate with a sense of purpose and patriotism, following the terrorist attacks on September 11. I longed for a sense of community in a confusing time….

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#America, #ChildWelfare, #King

When School’s Out, Hungry Kids Miss their Meals

For many American children, summer is about barbecues, corn on the cob, watermelon, and drippy ice cream cones. For others, it’s about hunger.

During the school year, children from low-income families qualify for federally-funded National School Lunch Program (NSLP) and sometimes the School Breakfast Program through their public schools. Under these programs, a family of four earning less than $31,005 can receive free meals and those earning under $44,123 receive reduced price meals. These programs feed twenty-one million children at school and give their families’ budgets a break. During the summer, children living in areas where the majority of school children qualify for school lunches are eligible to receive meals through NSLP as well as the Summer Food Service Program (SFSP). Why then did only one in seven eligible children receive meals through these programs last summer and what toll is food insecurity taking on their well-being? …

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#ChildWelfare, #Hunger, #Nutrition