Youth Engagement Practice Examples
The Children’s Bureau, an agency within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, provides discretionary funds for projects designed to eliminate barriers to adoption and help find permanent families for children who would benefit from adoption, particularly children with special needs.
This page provides a brief overview of each grantee as well as resources related to building relationships with teens; understanding the impact of trauma, separation, and loss; and preparing teens and adoptive families for permanency.
The CORE (Critical On-going Resource Family Education) Teen curriculum is a state-of-the-art training program to equip resource parents with skills necessary to meet the needs of older youth who have moderate to serious emotional and behavior health challenges. The curriculum address a healthy and supportive relationship with youth. Below are a few of the resources from the training:
The Minority Professional Leadership Development (MPLD) program at AdoptUSKids is a 12-month program designed for emerging minority leaders working in the child welfare field.As part of their participation, fellows design and implement action research projects to address issues related to adoption or guardianship.The four projects shared below are centered on permanency for teens.
- Teens and Adoption: Ambivalence, Preparation, and Readiness
- Preparing the Agency to Support Adoptive Families of Older Youth [Video]
- Unlocking Permanency: Navigating the Myths of Emancipation [Video]
- Screening Resource Families in to a Role Where They Can Succeed
The National Adoption Competency Mental Health Training Initiative (NTI) aims to improve the outcomes for children and youth in foster, adoptive, and guardianship families by infusing enhanced permanency, adoption, and mental health competency in the provision of casework and clinical practice.
NTI developed two state-of-the-art, standardized, web-based trainings to build the capacity of child welfare and mental health professionals in all States, Tribes, and territories to effectively support children, youth, and their foster, adoptive, and guardianship families. The NTI training has many modules relevant to understanding the impact of trauma and loss on a youth's relationships; building rapport, trust, and openness; and facilitating conversations with youth about grief and loss. The resources on NTI's Resources for Working with Teens webpage are a sample of the information provided in this training.
The National Training and Development Curriculum for Foster and Adoptive Parents (NTDC) will prepare parents who are fostering and adopting with the tools to effectively parent children exposed to trauma, separation, and loss and provide these families with the ongoing skills development needed to understand and promote healthy child development. At the end of the project, States, counties, Tribes, territories, and private agencies will have access to a free, comprehensive curriculum. A few resources from the curriculum are highlighted below:
The National Quality Improvement Center for Adoption and Guardianship Support and Preservation (QIC-AG) was a 5-year cooperative agreement designed to promote permanence (when reunification is no longer a goal) and to improve support for adoption and guardianship preservation. The QIC-AG worked with eight sites that implemented evidence-based interventions or developed and tested promising practices. The interventions that were proven effective can be replicated or adapted in other child welfare jurisdictions. Two interventions that can support relationship building with teens are featured below.
Tuning in to Teens (TINT)
Pathways to Permanence 2