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. …

Full Story @
#ChildWelfare, #FosterCare, #Suicide

Foster Youths Re-Writing their Past

“When you go through the system, you train yourself not to remember your life, so I only remember my life from second grade on.” — Sade, former foster youth.
Sade and her siblings officially went into the system when she was 13. Her mother was a drug addict and physically abusive. That’s all Sade knew. Anger and rage become the words that identified her.

Full Story @
#FosterCare, #JuvenileJustice, #Latest, #YouthDevelopment

Changing Perceptions in Foster Care Youth

Written By Mira Zimet

“My teacher called me the ‘F’ word,” one former foster youth mumbled during a “Pain to Power” meeting held by the RightWay Foundation. Twelve transitional-aged youth sat around a table that filled the room.  At first everyone looked confused, trying to figure out which of the many ‘F’ words the teacher could have thrown at him.

“Foster child” he finally said, his head bent down. You couldn’t see his tears, but you could hear his heart break. He was on the football team, none of his friends knew he was in foster care, and his teacher “outed” him. He was embarrassed and humiliated. The class exploded in fury. One of the girls turned to him, her voice filled with outrage and asked him to hold on to the strength that he had, that he was worthwhile and more than just a foster child, even though that’s the label the world might give him.

Full Story @
#Foster, #FosterCare

Are Child Protection Quotas Endangering Minnesota Children?

Written By Daniel Heimpel

In 2000, Minnesota launched a pilot for its now statewide differential response (DR) program. DR is a popular child protection strategy with mixed results, in which help is offered to abusive or neglectful parents, but rarely forced upon them.

More than seven of every ten “screened-in” cases of abuse and neglect in Minnesota were placed on the “family assessment” track, according to the Department of Human Services’ (DHS) website.

But the state’s 71 percent diversion to DR appears to reflect the desire of DHS administrators more than it does the decisions and policies of local child welfare leaders. The Chronicle of Social Change has learned that DHS expected each of Minnesota’s 87 counties to place 70 percent of screened-in cases on the DR track….

Full Story @
#FosterCare, #SocialWork

Project and People Management

This summer has been one long learning opportunity for the Emerging Leaders and me. With everyone’s schedules shifting over the summer, it’s been challenging getting regular meetings together, so it’s taken an extra toll on me to keep everyone abreast. The ridiculousness of the situation really stands out as I type that last sentence. Why is it my job always to be herding cats?…

Full Story @
#EmergingLeaders, #FosterCare, #StrategicPlanning, #YouthDevelopment

Case in point

Well, I promised to follow up my last post with some good news, and I know that at least one of my readers will be disappointed that she won’t get to read about the sense of optimism I feel in the air just yet. Instead, I’m gonna hang out on my soapbox for a little while longer because I’m still working through my irritation….

Full Story @
#Adoption, #FosterCare, #Mentoring

Complaints, concerns, but also causes for optimism

I’ve been delaying writing this post because for a stretch I was too outraged about certain things I’d been hearing in the foster care scene. Outrage is healthy if you can articulate it well and channel it productively, but anger is not the emotion I want to lead with. So, what’s changed? So much in the l ……

Full Story @
#ChildWelfare, #FosterCare, #Housing, #Policy