Children and youth involved with child welfare may be at greater risk for mental and behavioral health issues than children in the general population because of histories of trauma, including experiencing maltreatment or separation from parents and/or siblings. When mental or behavioral health issues are identified early and children and youth are referred to the appropriate services, outcomes and well-being may be improved. Children with untreated mental health issues may be at greater risk for substance use, low academic achievement, involvement with the juvenile justice system, homelessness, or other negative outcomes. This section offers resources and information on practice models for facilitating teaming in the provision of mental health services, a trauma training toolkit, and information on supporting children of parents with co-occurring issues such as mental illness and substance use.
303: Childhood Mental Health Issues: An Introduction for Child Welfare Professionals
Schott & Coyle (2013)
Pennsylvania Child Welfare Training Program
Introduces child welfare professionals to the topic of childhood mental health issues and its connection to child welfare and the permanency process. This training highlights best practices in the areas of collaboration, service planning, permanency planning, and placement related to the case process for a child with mental health issues.
The Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACE) Study
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention & Kaiser Permanente
Provides information, data, major findings, and publications about one of the largest investigations ever conducted to assess associations between childhood maltreatment and later-life health and well-being.
Caring for Children Who Have Experienced Trauma: A Workshop for Resource Parents
National Child Traumatic Stress Network (2010)
Provides foster parents, adoptive parents, and other caregivers with information and skills on how to care for children involved with child welfare who have experienced traumatic stress. This workshop teaches participants about the importance of trauma-informed parenting and provides examples of specific interventions.
The Child Welfare/Mental Health Learning Collaborative Toolkit
California Social Work Education Center
Provides a compendium of resources designed to assist county administrators and staff implement integrated child welfare and mental health services for families and children participating in both systems. This toolkit serves as an information hub and provides implementation and training resources for the Core Practice Model, developed by the California Department of Social Services and the Department of Health Care Services to unite the two departments and facilitate teaming with families and providers in the provision of mental health services to children involved with child welfare.
Child Welfare Trauma Training Toolkit
National Child Traumatic Stress Network (2nd ed.) (2013)
Aims to teach basic knowledge, skills, and values about working with children who are involved with child welfare and who have experienced traumatic events. This toolkit includes information about types of trauma, cultural implications, long-term effects of childhood trauma, parent trauma, and secondary traumatic stress and teaches strategies for using trauma-informed child welfare practice to enhance the safety, permanency, and well-being of children and families.
Home to Stay: A Post-Adoption Resource Guide for Wisconsin Families (PDF - 2,427 KB)
Coalition for Children, Youth & Families (2011)
Provides information on postadoption resources for children and families through the Home to Stay program in Wisconsin, including supports for addressing mental and behavioral health conditions.
Reducing the Trauma of Investigation, Removal, and Out-of-Home Placement (PDF - 374 KB)
Portland State University, Center for Improvement of Child and Family Services, & Oregon Department of Human Services
Presents a collection of documents that explores the impact of trauma on children involved in child abuse and neglect cases and strategies for reducing trauma by supporting children and adolescents during investigation, removal, and out-of-home placement.
Screening, Assessing, Monitoring and Using Evidence-Based Interventions to Improve Well-Being of Children in Child Welfare (PDF - 613 KB)
Conradi, Landsverk, & Wotring (2014)
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Children's Bureau
Describes a process for delivering trauma screening, functional and clinical assessment, evidence-based interventions, and the use of progress monitoring in order to better achieve well-being outcomes. This paper is part of the Integrating Safety, Permanency and Well-Being Series, white papers published by the Children's Bureau to further the national dialogue on the topic of well-being.
Supporting Children of Parents With Co-Occurring Mental Illness and Substance Abuse (PDF - 1,485 KB)
National Abandoned Infants Assistance Resource Center
Explores the impact of parental co-occurring disorders and ways to address the unique and complicated needs specific to children of parents with co-occurring disorders. This research to practice brief offers recommended interventions for supporting children at different ages, as well as trauma-informed support for mothers and supportive agency practices.