Children and youth thrive in families. Resource families, such as foster parents, foster-to-adopt families, and kin caregivers, are critical partners in providing care and support for children and youth in foster care. Deliberate recruitment of families who reflect the ethnic and racial diversity of children awaiting placement and who have the skills to provide a stable, loving home for children experiencing a variety of needs is vital.
Recruiting relatives and fictive kin is preferred when children cannot safely remain with their parents or caregivers. Implementing best practices, such as family finding, can create opportunities for children to maintain family and cultural connections that can minimize the trauma of family separation. When relatives or fictive kin are unavailable, recruiting families from within the child's community can also keep those connections.
Ongoing training and trauma-informed, culturally responsive supports are essential to retaining resource families. Connecting resource families—including formal, informal, and fictive kin—to services throughout placement supports their ability to help the children in their care navigate life and its challenges. Providing easy-to-access and equitable concrete supports and trainings for families can help them develop skills and build resilience.
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Recruiting Foster and Adoptive Families of Color: Stories and Strategies From Leaders of Color in Child Welfare
View a webinar that shares stories and strategies from child welfare leaders of color on recruiting, retaining, and supporting foster and adoptive families of color. Additionally, presenters discuss why Black and Brown families need unique support.
How Have Some Child Protection Agencies Successfully Recruited and Retained Resource Families?
Find details on the critical and ongoing function of recruitment and retention and how three jurisdictions which maintain a high rate of children placed in family-based settings, but a low rate of children placed in congregate care settings.
Intentionality: It's What Foster Parent Recruitment and Retention Needs
Review strategies that can be implemented by child welfare agencies to more effectively recruit and retain foster and adoptive families of color with better marketing, collaboration and partnerships, and using other foster parents as recruiters.
Diligent Recruitment Navigator
Find a tool that guides States, Tribes, and other jurisdictions through the development of a comprehensive, multi-faceted diligent recruitment program. The navigator provides suggested discussion questions and people to include in the process.
Data-driven Diligent Rrecruitment: Using Data to Recruit and Sustain Families
View a webinar that shares information on data-driven ways to effectively recruit and support foster, adoptive, and kinship families. This webinar also highlights best practices and offers related resources for child welfare professionals and others.
What Are Some Strategies for Finding and Keeping Traditional and Therapeutic Resource Families?
Learn strategies for recruiting traditional resource families, strategies to customize recruitment of therapeutic resource families, and strategies to bolster recruitment efforts. Also find a various tools and resources to support retention plans.