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E-News SEPTEMBER 2015         View this email in your browser      Invite a friend to subscribe

Wendi Turner

The Director's Corner


Imagine getting a call from your county child welfare department asking you to immediately become the caregiver for your 3-year-old granddaughter and 5-year-old grandson.  Their mother has been arrested, or the parent's on drugs, or worse. What would you say? 

According to the 2015-2016 PCSAO Fact book in 2012, 99,478 Ohio grandparents said "Yes, we'll take them".


For the tens of thousand of grandparents, aunts, uncles and other kin caring for children,  OFCA would like to thank you for sacrificing your time, energy and resources to provide a safe and loving home.   In appreciation for all you do... This months e-news letter is dedicated to you. 

 
Wendi Turner, Executve Director 

Email: wendi@ofcaonline.org 
Office: 614-222-2712
Website: www.ofcaonline.org

Rethinking Foster Care
 
This talk was given at a local TEDx event, produced independently of the TED Conferences. Molly McGrath Tierney is the Director for the Baltimore City Department of Social Services, managing the City's child welfare and public assistance programs. Over the past six years, she has led a massive reform effort to dramatically improve the impact of services to vulnerable citizens of Baltimore. Molly's work is considered a national model for modern social services

Click HERE to watch Video
The State of Kinship Care in America

Kinship caregivers keep families together and save taxpayers $4 billion a year. 

According to Generations United, the 2014 State of Grandparents Report found
  • 2.7 Million Grandparents are responsible for grandchildren
  • 58% of grandparents raising their grandchildren are in the workforce
  • 21% of grandparents raising their grandchildren live below the poverty line
  • 40% grandparents raising their grandchildren have provided care for more than 5 years
Kinship children, like most foster children, have experienced multiple stressors which according to the well-known Adverse Childhood Experience (ACE) Study, can lead to lifelong social, health and economic problems.  

These children often need special supports that reduce stress and address mental health needs.  While we know that kinship caregivers are determined and resilient, they shouldn't have to do the job alone

OFCA as well as local advocacy groups such as Ohio Grandparent Kinship Coalition (OGKC) and National advocacy organizations such as Generation United work to enact policies and promote programs, like kinship navigators and respite care, that help kinship caregivers address challenges.

Research shows that programs like these can reduce costs and increase permanency, while resulting in fewer days in child welfare custody and lower rates of foster care reentry.
Read "State of Grandparents in America: 2014 Report"

Annual Kinship Conference

Kudos to Franklin County Children Services (FCCS) and The Ohio Grandparent Kinship Coalition (OGKC) for their success in presenting an informative, fun and eventful conference for kinship families. 
Trainer, author and international Kinship care advocate Dr. Joseph Crumbley gave an interactive presentation that engaged parents and allowed ample time for input and feedback.  At the end of the conference, door prizes and raffles of donated bikes and gift baskets put lots of smiles of the faces of the children and kinship caregivers that attended.  

Well done FCCS and OGKC!

In Foster Care, Treating the Trigger

This short radio piece reports that abuse, abandonment and neglect can change the way a child's brain develops, and reports that New York City doctors are now treating some of the city's most vulnerable children for PTSD. 


Read more and listen.

The Walking Dead: Sorry Rick, The Kids Aren’t Alright


While researching post traumatic stress disorder and trauma, I stumbled across an article written by Scientific Parent writer Leslie Waghorn.  While I do not recommend allowing children to watch the "Walking Dead" series, a weekly AMC television program about a zombie filled Apocalypse world, the information in the article presented a interesting perspective on the brain development of children exposed to trauma and high levels of stress during prenatal development and in their formative years.  

       Although there are not many children in the series the few that are (pre-teen Carl and baby Judith) are repeatedly exposure to constant loud noises, violent movements, frightening images, multiple changes in care givers and unpredictable adult behavior. It is an interesting perspective to see how producers handled the impact trauma had on children living in an unpredictable world.

CLICK HERE TO READ ARTICLE 

Wendi Turner, Executive Director  

The Grandfamilies State Law & Policy Resource Center

Serves as a national legal resource in support of grandfamilies within and outside the child welfare system. You can find information on current and pending laws, adoption, financial help, special guardian options and more.  

Grandfamilies.org provides:

The Center is a collaboration among the American Bar Association Center on Children and the Law,Generations United, and Casey Family Programs.


   


In a unique national partnership, AARPBrookdale Foundation GroupCasey Family ProgramsChild Welfare League of AmericaChildren's Defense Fund and Generations United have created the GrandFacts: State Fact Sheets for Grandparents and Other Relatives Raising Children.
 

Each state fact sheet provides state-specific data, information and helpful links including:

 

  • Census data
  • Key state and local programs and resources
  • Foster care policies and services
  • Public benefits and financial assistance
  • Education assistance (NEW in 2011!)
  • State laws

For more details go to: 
http://www.aarp.org/relationships/friends-family/grandfacts-sheets/ 

Be an effective Advocate You can Make a Difference
 
     

“In the end, we will remember not the words of our enemies, but the silence of our friends

~ Martin Luther King, Jr.


OHIO ADMINISTRATIVE CODE RULE REVIEW

No Rules Open For Comment
For more details visit: Ohio Rule Review website

Resources, Training & Articles

Upcoming Event(s)

Early Thanksgiving Dinners for Teens and Young Adults  

                                

It is time for the 8th annual Early Thanksgiving Dinner for Ohio foster care youth, alumni and allies/adult supporters.  Registration is free, but required  - Print PDF Flyer HERE
Register here --  http://thanksgivingtogether.wikispaces.com 

Southwest Regional Thanksgiving Saturday, November 14, 2015 
Northeast Regional Thanksgiving Saturday, November 14, 2015

Southeast Regional Thanksgiving Sunday, November 15, 2015
Central Regional Thanksgiving Sunday, November 22, 2015 

Questions? Please contact Lisa Dickson, Communications Chair, ACTION Ohio (614) 787-5257, lisa@fosteractionohio.org

 
Upcoming Training
SAVE THE DATE!    
30th PCSAO statewide conference
October 21-23, 2015, Columbus OH
Focused on the journey that our child welfare workers and the families/children they serve take together to keep children safe, build strong and supporting families, provide them with resources, and partner with communities to support the child protection mission.  Download the conference registration information and register online


SAVE THE DATE!  
12th Annual Wells Conference
March 10, 2016, Columbus OH
Family and Youth Law Center, in collaboration with Capital University Law Reviewk.  Each year the Wells Conference attracts professionals and academics who are pioneers and innovators in the fields of child welfare and adoption law.  -- More information coming soon!

CHILD WELFARE NEWS

US: Funding and Federal Support for Kinship Care on the Rise
Child Trends - October 23, 2014
http://www.childtrends.org/funding-and-federal-support-for-kinship-care-on-the-rise/

US: Child Welfare: Steps Have Been Taken to Address Unregulated Custody Transfers of Adopted Children: GAO report
Government Accountability Office - September 16, 2015
Some adoptive families may consider giving their children to another family outside of the courts and child welfare system--an "unregulated child custody transfer"--because of a crisis within the adoptive family and difficulties accessing support services, according to officials GAO interviewed from selected states, child welfare and adoption organizations, and adoption agencies. Report: http://www.gao.gov/assets/680/672575.pdf     http://www.gao.gov/products/GAO-15-733


OH: Rising child placement costs concern commissioners
Port Clinton News Herald - September 18, 2015
The commissioners had allocated approximately $48,000 per month for Sandusky County Jobs and Family Services for costs that include removing children from homes deemed unsuitable. But the bill for September alone was $97,000 -- more than double the budget.

http://www.portclintonnewsherald.com/story/news/local/2015/09/18/rising-child-placement-costs-concern-commissioners/72426440/

Ohio Resource Families United for Advocacy, Education and Support

           
Our mailing address is:
1151 Bethel Road, Suite 104B, Columbus, OH 43220
www.OFCAonline.org

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