Follow along with NewFound Families as we work to support families. In this news column we seek to provide current information about the admininistration of the child welfare system. Become part of our community and join us on Facebook.
DATE: August 23, 2011
TO: Local Department of Social Services Directors, Foster Care and Adoption
Supervisors and Staff, Licensed Child Placing Agencies, FACES of Virginia’s Families
FROM: Jack Ledden, Director, Division of Family Services
Therese Wolf, Foster Care Program Manager
Rita Katzman, Child Protective Services Program Manager
SUBJECT: Foster Family Evacuations Due to Weather Conditions: Procedures for Tracking Children in Foster Care
CONTACT: Therese Wolf, Foster Care Program Manager (804)-726-7522 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Due to the potential for flooding and power outages as a result of Hurricane Irene, some local departments of social services (LDSS) may be closing. In addition, some foster parents may also elect to evacuate their homes if weather conditions are, or may become, extreme. If your locality does not have a procedure in place to track the whereabouts of these children and families, the following procedures must be followed to ensure that the location of all children in foster care who may be temporarily displaced due to weather conditions are known.
If your LDSS does not normally forward the phone to the Child Protective Services/Adult Protective Services hotline and your agency is anticipating closing, please put a message on your agency voice mail system for foster parents who decide to leave their home due to weather conditions to contact the state hotline at 800-552-7096 to provide the following information:
- Name, address and contact information of foster parent(s)
- Name and DOB of foster child(ren) in the home
- LDSS that has custody of the child
- If applicable, name and contact number for the private child placing agency with whom the child is placed.
VDSS and FACES of Virginia Families are also posting similar instructions for foster parents on their websites in case the foster parent cannot reach the LDSS.
Private Licensed Child Placing Agencies (LCPA)
LCPA’s who have procedures in place to track the whereabouts of foster parents and children who have evacuated due to the weather must also notify the state through the CPS hotline regarding the whereabouts of all children in their care as indicated above.
FACES members are a voice for resource families and children…and every voice counts. Over 1000 families are calling FACES their organization, will you be the next?
We have two key goals:
1. To represent every foster, adoptive, and kinship family in Virginia at state planning meetings for regulations, policies, and practices as well as providing timely and essential information to state legislators when they come to Richmond. You can learn more about our work at the state level by joining our FACEBOOK or Foster Parent Central on-line community accessible from the home page.
2. To serve families and communities through support and education so that every child in the care of foster, adoptive, and kinship families is treated with dignity, respect, and equality in order to reach their full adult potential.
We can’t do this alone. We need every parent, sibling, aunt, uncle, grandparent, and youth to stand with us in taking a stand for the children in our care. Will you join us?
As a FACES member we will support you through:
- Advocacy Alerts giving you information about federal/state legislation issues that matter to families. We subscribe to CapWiz for our website so that you have an easy mechanism for finding your elected officials and sending them messages.
- Web Notes lettings you know about important updates to our website and web links we believe you will find useful.
- Training Bulletins keeping you posted on training opportunities which we believe are beneficial to resource parents.
- Family Living newsletter providing helpful tips for your family.
- Ladders4Youth newsletter to provide you with resources and information to support youth living in your home or those leaving care.
- Representation on all Virginia Department of Social Services committees as well as other state committees impacting child welfare in Virginia and an educational advocacy voice at the state legislative level.
- Discounts to training and educational events sponsored by FACES.
- Toolkits for families in need of resource referrals and educational information, upon request.
In addition, the first 500 new foster, adoptive, or kinship parent members this year will receive:
- One free Foster Parent College on-line training course OR
- One free annual subscription to Fostering Families, Adoption Today, or Grandfamilies magazine.
FACES also offers exciting membership opportunities for agencies, organizations, and businesses.
Virginia's Child Welfare Transformation is placing a renewed focus on finding birth family members when children enter foster care and on reunification with birth parents. Please take time to review this concise and informative booklet from City University of New York.
FACES of Virginia Families Launches Open Arms Initiative
(RICHMOND), Virginia's FACES of Virginia Families, a non-profit support association has established the Open Arms Initiative as an effort to assist families in adopting children from the Virginia foster care system, and assist children currently in the system find a family that might be of interest to them.