Working with families and caregivers after permanency can involve an array of services that should be tailored to each family’s circumstances. Whether permanency was achieved through reunification, placement with kin, guardianship, or adoption, postpermanency services are important and may include support groups, financial support, case management, connections with community services, and respite care, among others. The following resources discuss a range of support options to consider when working with children, youth, and families after permanency.
Effective Facilitation of Parent Support Groups [Webinar]
Explores how to effectively facilitate support groups for foster, adoptive, and kinship family members and caregivers and discusses how facilitating a support group can be an important skill for child welfare workers to help enhance stability in families both before and after permanency is achieved. These groups provide a safe place for parents to share their personal experiences without judgment, allow parents to learn new skills, and offer a sense of community to parents who may fear their situation is unique.
Effectively Implementing Effective Practices for Sustainable Permanency: A Synthesis of Research and Practice (PDF - 3,256 KB)
Metz, Bartley, Farley, & Cusumano (2018)
National Implementation Research Network
Provides a summary of effective practices related to sustaining permanency for children and examines effective implementation supports for ensuring permanency practices are used.
Engaging Parents and Caregivers in Support Groups [Webinar]
Explores how parent group leaders can engage adoptive, foster, and kinship parents and keep them connected to new or existing support groups. The webinar also discusses how connecting parents to support groups can help them to feel comfortable sharing with others who have been through similar situations and discuss their lives without fear of judgment, which can lead to empowerment and greater family stability both pre- and postpermanency.
Family Stability and Wellness Post-Permanency (PDF - 466 KB)
National Adoption Competency Mental Health Training Initiative (2018)
Discusses the continuum of postadoption needs for youth and families, reviews types of adoption instability, and examines how child welfare professionals can help provide long-term support for a sustainable permanent placement.
How Child Welfare Systems Are Providing Family Support: Respite Care Services (PDF - 157 KB)
Describes respite care and how child welfare professionals can provide respite to families or help them to find respite care providers, including after permanency. This tip sheet reviews ways in which child welfare agencies help to ensure foster, adoptive, and kinship families have access to both planned and crisis respite care.
Permanency Innovations Initiative (PII) Project Resources
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Children's Bureau (2014)
Includes resources from the Federal Permanency Innovations Initiative, a multisite demonstration project designed to improve permanency outcomes among children in foster care who have the most serious barriers to permanency.
Promoting Birth Parents' Relationships With Their Toddlers Upon Reunification: Results From Promoting First Relationships Home Visiting Program (PDF - 214 KB)
Oxford, Marcenko, Fleming, Lohr, & Spieker (2016)
Children and Youth Services Review, 61
Evaluates a 10-week home visiting program for reunified birth parents of toddlers and describes how the program serves the needs of parents and children after permanency. Results showed that the intervention improved both parenting sensitivity and decreased child behavior problems.
Safe and Sound: Responding to the Experiences of Children Adopted or in Foster Care: A Guide for Caseworkers (PDF - 20,117 KB)
American Academy of Pediatrics (2019)
Helps child welfare workers improve their skills to work with adoptive and foster families recognize and understand children who have experienced trauma.
Supporting Lifelong Families: Ensuring Long-Lasting Permanency and Well-Being (PDF - 886 KB)
Roberts, O'Brien, & Pecora (2017)
Casey Family Programs
Offers a high-level review of reentry data and discusses postpermanency programs that can help improve services for youth and their families as they exit care. The brief aims to guide the conversation toward postpermanency, which focuses on the family, and away from reentry, which focuses on the system.
Supporting Sustained Permanency [Webinar]
Child Welfare League of America and Casey Family Programs (2018)
Presents a two-part webinar series featuring recordings and slide shows on national reentry and approaches toward sustained permanency for children, youth, and families.
Ten Practical Steps to Support Sustained Permanency
O'Brien, Roberts, Rudlang-Perman, Allen, & Pecora (2016)
Child Welfare League of America
Discusses a list of 10 practical steps agencies can take to support sustained permanency for families. The steps are broken down by domain and touch on reframing work, using data, maximizing funding streams, enhancing agency approach, and engaging youth and families.
Title IV-E Guardianship Assistance
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Children's Bureau (2013)
Describes the title IV-E Guardianship Assistance Program (GAP), a grant that helps States and Tribal organizations provide guardianship assistance payments to support the care of children by relatives who have assumed legal guardianship.
Using Facebook Groups to Provide Family Support After Placement [Webinar]
Provides information about the benefits of using Facebook groups to offer adoptive, foster, and kinship families support online. The North American Council on Adoptable Children explains their use of Facebook support groups to more than 2,000 parents across Minnesota.