Episode 41: Birth-Foster Parent Mentoring Teams
Bringing birth parents and foster parents together to share information, partner, and eliminate barriers and stigmas may lead to faster reunifications and help children maintain strong connections during and after their time in out-of-home care.
This episode, 'Birth-Foster Parent Mentoring Teams,' features a conversation with both birth and foster parent mentors and leaders, along with the 2018 California Social Worker of the Year. Together, the group describes the work toward changing the culture around foster care to support reunification by creating relationships and partnerships between birth and foster parents.
"By the end of the meeting, they were both crying and hugging… This birth mom looked at the foster mom and said, ‘I would like to give her more time with him.’ She wanted to make sure this foster mom got more time with this little boy rather than just 'give me my child back.' And today they are still working really well together."
—Jody Rodgers, parent mentor
The following individuals are featured in this episode:
- Katie Luciana, parent mentor program manager, Child Parent Institute
- Jody Rodgers, parent mentor and navigator
- Robyn Robbins, foster parent trainer and mentor
- Rose Eshe, social worker, Sonoma County (California) Family, Youth and Children’s Division
Topics discussed include the following:
- How all partners can work together to create relationships between birth and foster parents
- How social workers can incorporate these relationships into their daily work
- Getting buy-in from birth parents, foster parents, and agency leaders