“One Childhood, One Chance” Kinship Program
One of the things that shock most people about grandparents and other relatives who are the primary caregivers for family members’ children is that there are so many of them. In the United States approximately 6.7 million children live with grandparents and other relative caregivers who provide the sole support and parental role for these children. Most of these families are not involved in the child welfare system and are not receiving financial assistance or much needed support services. However, many of the caregivers have already raised their children, and they find that the stress of parenting the second time around is quite different from the stress they experienced raising children the first time.
Kinship relatives prevent children from entering foster care saving taxpayers billions of dollars a year in federal foster care costs. More importantly, relative children are able to stay with family! Kinship families allow sibling groups and family traditions to stay intact. Relative children are provided a second chance to grow up in a safe and nurtured home.
Kids Central, Inc. took a stand and began the Kinship Care Program as part of our prevention services in mid-2005. With this Kinship Program, many services and an annual Kinship Conference is now available to the relative caregiver families. Since 2005, Kids Central has been able to successfully assist over 2,000 relative children not involved in the formalized child welfare system.
Accomplishments to date:
- The fourth year of the annual Kinship Conference. The first day is for professionals and the second day is for kinship families.
- Educational support groups in five counties
- Comprehensive services for kinship families
- National, local, and state collaborations on programming and funding
- Provide training at statewide and local conferences and meetings
- Over 95% of clients involved with the Kinship Program do not enter the formalized child welfare system.
- Assisted 100’s of relatives with obtaining guardianship of relative children without the child welfare system
- Assisting and navigating clients through systems
Kids Central Inc. Kinship Program is offering a wide variety of consulting services. We offer a combination of proven methods and innovative approaches to support kinship families. Brief descriptions of some of our capabilities are listed below. However, this is not the full extent of our capabilities.
- Development of policies and procedures
- Develop of Curriculum and forms
- Engaging the community
- Establishing an advisory board and other structural supports
- Project design and implementation
- Strategic planning
- Ongoing evaluation through data collection
Kids Central focuses on strength based, family centered programming based on best practices of social work. We encourage organizations to implement small changes to help these kinship families in your community. We would like to help you implement these changes.
Click here for Kids Central Consulting Services and Best Practice brochure.
Click here for a sample proposal for Kinship Consulting.
John Cooper, CEO, John.Cooper@kidscentralinc.org
Debra Wise-Velez, Deputy Chief of Prevention Services, Debra.Wise@kidscentralinc.org
Michelle Mongeluzzo, Director of Prevention Services, Michelle.Mongeluzzo@kidscentralinc.org
Tawnya Drent, Kinship Supervisor, Tawnya.Drent@kidscentralinc.org
Telephone: (352) 873-6332
Mail: 901 Industrial Dr. Suite 200 Wildwood, FL 34785