Social and community context is a social determinant of health, or a nonmedical factor that impacts the health and well-being of children, youth, and families. Social and community context refers to the impacts of relationships and the settings where people live, work, and interact with others. This includes interactions between people and connections with larger social, cultural, and other institutions.

When people are well-connected and supported by their communities, their health and well-being are positively impacted. In a child welfare context, strong social networks and communities can help families thrive and reduce the need for child welfare system involvement.

However, some interactions between individuals and within communities can create challenges. For example, living in areas without equitable access to services or experiencing discrimination can lead to disparities in health and well-being. An equitable child welfare system supports equitable access to the services and concrete supports families need to thrive before child welfare intervention becomes necessary.  

Explore the following resources to learn about leveraging social and community supports to improve family health and well-being.

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