Diligent recruitment is the systematic process through which child welfare agencies recruit, retain, and support foster and adoptive families that reflect the ethnic diversity of children awaiting placements. Find resources below explaining best practices, implementation strategies, and practical examples related to diligent recruitment in agency settings.
Analysis of State 2020–2024 Foster and Adoptive Parent Diligent Recruitment Plans
Children Need Amazing Parents (2020)
Synthesizes data from 42 diligent recruitment plans and presents six key elements that lead to the effective recruitment and retention of foster and adoptive parents.
A CHAMPS Guide on Foster Parent Recruitment and Retention: Strategies for Developing a Comprehensive Program (PDF - 2,587 KB)
Children Need Amazing Parents (2019)
Provides useful information and suggestions for innovative, promising approaches to include in diligent recruitment plans. The guide encourages agencies to go beyond writing a plan, spurring new and improved programming resulting in agency-wide prioritization of foster parenting.
Diligent Recruitment of Families for Children in the Foster Care System
Diligent Recruitment of Families for Children in the Foster Care System: Challenges and Recommendations for Policy and Practice (PDF - 526 KB)
Melz, Killian, Graham, & James Bell Associates (2019)
Children’s Bureau & Administration for Children and Families
Explains how child welfare agencies can implement systematic recruitment and support in order to meet the needs of children and youth in foster care.
Diligent Recruitment Navigator
Assists child welfare systems in developing or updating their diligent recruitment program. There are also supplements for specific populations and policies:
- Diligent Recruitment Navigator Worksheet
- Family First Supplement to the Diligent Recruitment Navigator (PDF - 112 KB)
- LGBTQ Supplement to Diligent Recruitment Navigator (PDF - 119 KB)
- Planning Tool for Tribes: A Tribal Supplement to the Diligent Recruitment Navigator (PDF - 96 KB)
Episode 14: Diligent Recruitment – Intelligent Recruitment
Child Welfare Information Gateway (2017)
Provides detail into how community-based care agencies, State agencies, and professional marketing teams partner together to gather target audience data and marketing and outreach plans unique to their region’s foster families.
Foster Home Estimator: Helping Child Welfare Agencies Plan for Family Recruitment
Annie E. Casey Foundation (2016)
Helps agencies build a more robust pool of foster parents by more accurately estimating how many additional foster homes are needed, especially for specific populations of children, such as teens or large sibling groups. This tool was tested and enhanced through years of collaboration between public agencies and the Annie E. Casey Foundation.
The Multiethnic Placement Act 25 Years Later: Diligent Recruitment Plans (PDF - 462 KB)
Kalisher, Spielfogel, Shenk, & Edouard (2020)
Office of the Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation & U.S. Department of Health and Human Services
Explores how diligent recruitment plans do and do not support efforts to increase the diversity among recruited foster and adoptive parents.
Multi-Ethnic Placement Act (MEPA) and Diligent Recruitment Plan [Video]
North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services (2019)
Discusses components of MEPA and how these provisions, in tandem with diligent recruitment, affects each phase of recruiting, retaining, and supporting foster families.