Family preservation services are short-term, family-focused services designed to assist families in crisis by improving parenting and family functioning while keeping children safe. Family preservation services grew out of the recognition that children need a safe and stable family and that separating children from their families is traumatic for them, often leaving lasting negative effects. These services build upon the conviction that many children can be safely protected and treated within their own homes when parents are provided with services and support that empower them to change their lives.
This section describes policy and program approaches to family preservation services and provides State and local examples of such services. It also addresses intensive family preservation services, a more intensive and crisis-focused version of preservation services.