This section offers resources to identify evidence-based and promising practices in kinship care programs, including State and local examples.
Kinship Care (PDF - 55 KB)
National Resource Center for Family-Centered Practice and Permanency Planning (2009)
Offers a tool for permanency that discusses the growth and advantages of kinship care, presents research findings on kinship care stability, and identifies the principles of best practice in facilitating permanence in kinship care.
CWLA Standards of Excellence for Kinship Care Services
Child Welfare League of America (2000)
Provides goals for the continuing improvement of services for children and families. They represent those practices considered to be most desirable in providing services. Standards are useful in planning, organizing, and administering service; in establishing state and local licensing requirements; and in determining the requirements for accreditation.
Kinship Care in the United States: A Systematic Review of Evidence-Based Research: Final Report (PDF - 456 KB)
Winokur, Rozen, Thompson, Green, & Valentine (2005)
Summarizes 35 quantitative studies of outcomes for children placed with grandparents or relatives compared to those placed in foster care and discusses the implications of those outcomes for planning and implementing kinship care services for children and families.
Supporting Kinship Care: Towards a New Practice Framework (PDF - 268 KB)
Benevolent Society (2009)
Reviews kinship care policy and practice models in Australia and other countries, discusses promising kinship care practices, and presents practice recommendations for an out-of-home care program in New South Wales.
Support Matters: Lessons from the Field on services for Adoptive, Foster, and Kinship Care Families
Provides instruction for managers to effectively plan and implement various support service programs, including kinship care.
Ten Steps Public Child Welfare Agencies Can Take to Support Children in Safe and Stable Kinship Families (PDF - 93 KB)
Recommends actions such as developing family finding protocols, assessing relative homes in a timely manner, developing standardized process to waive licensing requirements, improving financial assistance for relative caregivers, establishing cross-system partnerships, and more.
Training Kin to Be Foster Parents: Best Practices From the Field (PDF - 100 KB)
Includes information on Federal licensing requirements, State and county efforts to develop foster parent training programs tailored specifically for kin, common themes related to kin-specific training, and questions that States and localities should consider as they develop kin-specific training.
Using Kinship Navigators to Assess the Needs of Kinship Caregivers
GrandFamilies: The Contemporary Journal of Research, Practice and Policy, 2(1)
Discusses the resources needed to effectively support kin caregivers. Using the Family Needs Scale, the study details a kinship navigator program designed to address the service needs of kinship caregivers.
Relative Search and Placements (PDF - 137 KB)
Iowa Department of Human Services (2007)
Discusses best practices for placing foster children with relative caregivers, the steps for conducting a diligent search, assessment of the safety of a kinship arrangement, and ways to support kin.
Relative Search Best Practice Guide (PDF - 440 KB)
Minnesota Department of Human Services (2006)
Discusses how to conduct a relative search, the supervisor's role, and organizational supports for relative search efforts.
Treat Them Like Gold: A Best Practice Guide to Partnering With Resource Families (PDF - 4,016 KB)
North Carolina Division of Social Services (2009)
Provides tools and strategies to build, refine, and sustain partnerships with resource families, including kinship caregivers. Topics addressed include public awareness; community alliance building; general, targeted, and child-specific recruitment; training; diversity; and retention of resource families.