Many child welfare terms are subject to interpretation. The Glossary identifies commonly held definitions for terms that can be found on the Child Welfare Information Gateway website or in products and materials developed by external entities (e.g., Federal or State Agencies or other reliable organizations). When noted, Information Gateway is cited as the source. The Glossary also provides common acronyms and includes links to information on major Federal legislation and related child welfare terms. The Glossary will be updated as new terminology emerges in the field, as new legislation is enacted, and as child welfare terms take on new meaning.
For additional information on glossary terms, please see our index Search A-Z.
National Child Abuse and Neglect Data System (NCANDS)
A voluntary national data collection and analysis system created in response to the requirements of the Child Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act (P.L. 93-247) as amended.
NCANDS (See National Child Abuse and Neglect Data System.)
neonatal abstinence syndrome (NAS)
A group of problems that occur in a newborn who was exposed to addictive opiate drugs while in the mother’s womb. (National Institute of Health)
nonrecurring adoption expenses
The reasonable and necessary adoption fees, court costs, attorney's fees, and other expenses that are directly related to the legal adoption of a child with special needs, which are not incurred in violation of State or Federal law, and which have not been reimbursed from other sources or funds.
A father who does not live in the same household as his child. A nonresident father may be divorced, separated, or never married to the child's mother. (Adapted from National Responsible Fatherhood Clearinghouse.)
Behaviors and activities that further the growth and development of another person, family, group, or community.