Youth and young adults in child welfare are experts on themselves. Child welfare professionals need to meet them where they are, provide necessary information and support, and follow their lead throughout case planning. Case plans and services are typically more effective when developed with youth input. Engaging youth in casework also leads to improved safety, well-being, and permanency outcomes.
Authentic engagement means partnering with youth as soon as they become involved with the child welfare system and throughout their case planning. Beyond engagement at the individual case level, it is essential to infuse youth and family voice into the design, implementation, and evaluation of policies, programs, and services. Positive systems change requires ongoing, meaningful engagement at all levels of child welfare.
Discover more about authentically engaging youth and young adults using the resources below.
Adjust the filters to refine your results.
Can’t find what you need in the filtered results? Try searching our Library catalog to access a large selection of peer-reviewed journal articles, evaluation reports, Children’s Bureau grant materials, research studies, and more.
Prioritizing Youth Voice: The Importance of Authentic Youth Engagement in Case Planning
Learn about the importance of youth engagement and explore key concepts and strategies for caseworkers to apply to their practice while promoting increased safety, well-being, healthy development, and improved outcomes for young people.
Episode 84: What Does an Effective Support System Look Like?
This Information Gateway podcast explores how Alternative Family Services successfully creates effective support systems for youth in foster care.
Using Your Voice: A Guide for Youth on Participating in Case Planning
Find a guide that helps youth in foster care speak up about their wants, needs, concerns, questions, goals, and ambitions. It also covers how to engage with the child welfare system at the individual case level and through greater advocacy efforts.
Belonging Matters - Helping Youth Explore Permanency
Find information for child welfare and adoption professionals to help youth in foster care explore permanency options and the value of secure, permanent connections based on interviews with young people who were adopted or aged out of foster care.
Extension of Foster Care Beyond Age 18
Presents State laws and policies regarding services and assistance that support youth in making the transition to successful adulthood and that provide youth the ability to voluntarily extend their placement in out-of-home care.
Menu for Youth Engagement Guide
Offers a guide that explains the importance of engaging young people in practice, peer, and system levels. It also provides guidance on identifying actionable strategies agencies can use to strengthen the role youth play as well as engagement stories ...Read More