Meaningful Connections on the Rise
By Jenn Engel, Training Manager & CFE Lead
Since 2019, in Montgomery County…
Over the past two years, there has been an increase of family reunification or adoptions by relative or fictive caregivers; as well as older youth being connected with natural, caring adults because of CASA Advocates and the CFE team!
One of the important aspects of our Advocacy is gathering information about the child’s family from the beginning and throughout the case; assuming there are biological or fictive kinship connections who would be willing to be involved in the child’s life and future.
Important Questions to Ask
According to Youth Permanency expert, Kevin Campbell, parties who serve children under CPS care should ask the following questions:
- Do the longest-waiting children and youth in the foster care system have a family?
- Can CASA, CPS or other parties identify and locate them?
- Is there family concerned enough to offer to be involved as a healthy connection for the child and their family?
Benefits of Meaningful Connections
Benefits for children with meaningful connections outside of the professionals include:
- Higher success of legal permanence
- Ability to maintain important relationships.
- Reduces Psychological Stress.
- Improves self-worth and a sense of normalcy.
- Easier Transitions for Family Reunification or Adulthood for Teens.
Below is an updated genogram link to help learn more about the family: