Permanency Tip of the Week: Impact of the Behavior of Juvenile Justice Involved Youth on Permanency Efforts
The Youth that we serve who are involved with the Juvenile Justice System or are Dual-Status Youth (Child Welfare + Juvenile Justice) have all the same needs for Permanency. For these youth, one of the challenges that many people face in seeking / providing Permanency is being able to both acknowledge the issues that led to their involvement with the Juvenile Justice System and at the same time looking beyond these issues to see their need for Permanency. It is at these times, that reflecting back on the possible role that trauma, abuse, neglect played in the lives of Youth and the decisions that they have made is very critical. This does NOT mean that we condone their decisions; however, it is crucial that we also do not condemn them to a life without Permanency.
Permanency Success Story of the Week: No Matter What: An Adoptive Family’s Story of Hope, Love and Healing
Book Review – ‘I love you, no matter what.’ An uplifting true story of an ordinary couple who build an extraordinary family, No Matter What describes how Sally and Rob Donovan embark upon a journey to adopt following a diagnosis of infertility. Sally Donovan brings to life with characteristic wit and honesty the difficulties of living with infertility, their decision to adopt and the bewildering process involved. Finally matched with young siblings Jaymey and Harlee, Sally and Rob’s joy turns to shock as they discover disturbing details of their children’s past and realize that they must do everything it takes to heal their children.
By turns tragic, inspiring and hilarious, Sally and Rob’s story offers a rare insight into the world of adoptive parents and just what it takes to bring love to the lives of traumatized children.
Permanency Related Articles:
Ashley Rhodes-Courter – “You just say yes and you figure it out!” That’s the mantra that has led this 30-year-old throughout her life as a college graduate, fundraiser, best-selling author and now the leader of her own nonprofit organization, the Foundation for Sustainable Families. Ashley and her husband Erick Smith started the foundation in 2013. It focuses on a broad range of services to help educate and rehabilitate families in areas such as nutrition, breastfeeding, adoption services, mental health and more.
The goal is to provide preventative care and expertise to stabilize struggling families before things get too bad…“I think about my kids and I think about what their needs are and the kind of world that I want for them,” Ashley said. By noticing the needs of her own family, she has a better ability to help others. She has taken her experiences from both sides of the system and applied them towards building an organization to help promote a rounded view of community welfare.
Chronicle of Social Change – The Center for Native American Youth (CNAY) at The Aspen Institute introduced its first-ever online roundtable, Generation Indigenous (Gen-I), to further its reach in garnering the opinions of its stakeholders. In the resulting first annual report, titled The State of Native Youth and released in 2016, close to 700 youth aged 25 and younger answered questions about their top priorities and the resources they believe would help them succeed. Among the issues addressed were those related to the systems involving youth, including child welfare and juvenile justice, and the importance of maintaining cultural connections. Child Welfare Information Gateway resource: Working With American Indian and Alaskan Native Youth.
ACEs Connection Network – There is a national challenge to understand child and adult welfare. I have spent my whole life…42 years being trained to advocate and teach healthy dynamics, and for me it was life and death because my ACE score was either going to be a crutch or a gift. My training began in my mother’s womb. I started my development out being fed stress chemicals, and fear chemicals, because my mother was surrounded by toxic stress, poor choice behaviors, and a family who did not support her. She is one of my best friends today, but I didn’t get to meet her till I was 18 years old. My heart has multiplied compassion, because that is exactly what my Mother needed, AND I will change the thinking in my environment!…Please be kind always….. Talk to your kids about their parents with curiosity and a day may come where you need to support their exploration in finding out about who they are and where they come from. All they need to know is you are right there to support them. The last thing you want is for them to grow with anger and resentment deserved or not, it is toxic to their growth. Can we all learn an attitude that promotes peace?
Children’s Defense Fund has released a report funded by the California Wellness Foundation, on the new “LA Model” of juvenile incarceration. The LA Model will be piloted at a new small-group therapeutic facility being constructed at the site of the former Camp Kilpatrick, characterized by a therapeutic environment that is deeply rehabilitative…The report also makes specific recommendations to implement and support the essential elements of the LA Model, including the importance of multi-disciplinary team planning; engaging programming for youth; the inclusion of families in the treatment plan; aftercare and reentry as core drivers of case planning; a focus on relationships, homelike living spaces, and shared responsibility; psychological and physical safety; academic achievement and engagement; staff as mentors and support for staff mental health; individualizing, strength-based programming; and the importance of data-driven decision-making.
National Resource Center for Diligent Recruitment – This NRCDR publication provides specific strategies state and county child welfare systems can use to recruit families for Native American children in foster care, highlights the importance of effective recruitment strategies as a way to support a child welfare system’s efforts to comply with the Indian Child Welfare Act, and offers suggestions for developing and strengthening partnerships with tribes and tribal child welfare systems. While we developed this publication with the primary goal of building state child welfare systems’ capacities to recruit, develop, and support families for Native American children in foster care, tribes may also find ideas and strategies that are useful in their work. Tribes can also share this publication with state and county child welfare agencies, and it may provide a foundation for discussions about ways to work together.
“Tis better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all.” (Alfred Lord Tennyson). This famous quote focuses us all on the most important piece of life: to love. We are made to be in relationship. Not to our cell phone. Not to our stuff. Not to our work. Yes, to one another. A meaningful gesture, a kind act, a simple expression of care connects the world and breaks down walls of distrust, fear, and animosity. So, love, and love more!…Where is the hope for these 428,000 stranded children? They need us. All of us. As Valentine’s Day just passed, learn more about the needs of these children. Take 10 minutes to watch a video and listen to an audio. In this reflective time, we all move one step closer to a more full understanding of Love.
This Valentine’s Day consider Love: Find it. Embrace it. Share it!
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