Children's Bureau has just announced two discretionary grant
opportunities to improve child welfare service delivery and promote
family connections. Authorized by the Adoption Opportunities Program
(P.L. 111-320), Initiative to Improve Access to Needs-Driven,
Evidence-Based/Evidence-Informed Mental and Behavioral Health Services
in Child Welfare funds demonstration projects to build the capacity
for an integrated approach to a screening, assessment, service
provision and evaluation system that improves the socio-emotional and
behavioral well-being of children served by child welfare. Both the Children's Bureauand CWLA have prioritized making needed progress on tending to child well-being. Family Connection Grants: Combination Family-finding/Family Group Decision-makingProjects is
one of four FY2012 forecasted grants authorized under the Family
Connection Discretionary Grants Program created by the Fostering
Connections to Success and Increasing Adoptions Act of 2008 (P.L.
110-351). As indicated in the title, funds are available for
demonstration projects on intensive family-finding (IFF) and family
group decision-making (FGDM) to support permanency needs and maintenance
of children in safe, permanent living arrangements.
funding announcement for the capacity building grants includes
background on behavioral and mental health challenges; recent federal
legislative changes and oversight findings; and a screening, assessment
and service framework justifying the intent and incentivized approach
promoted by the grant to improve child well-being outcomes by increasing
positive functioning. Awards will cover a five year cooperative
agreement in two-phases, the first lasting up to nine months for
planning and assessment. Collaboration is expected amongst the grantee,
the Children's Bureau, partnering service agencies and organizations,
consumers, and field experts. Child welfare agencies are required
partners if not the grant lead. Eight grants ranging from $320,000 to
$640,000 for a total of $5.12 million are available. Applications are
due July 20th, 2012.
set of Family Connection Grants released will fund integrated IFF and
FGDM services that use technology and effective family engagement to
identify, establish and re-establish family and fictive kin
relationships and plan with families in meetings to determine the best
way to nurture and protect their child. Services should support
permanency needs, including but not limited to placement.
These three year demonstration projects are being funded to test how
this combination service reduces time in care and meets immediate and
long-term safety, permanency and well-being needs for children in or at
risk of entering the child welfare system and to further more consistent
and better integration of these family connection-focused techniques.
The funding announcement includes a detailed description and
evidence-base for each service, including lessons learned from previous
discretionary grants on the approaches. Expectations of the service
components and accompanying supports are also outlined. Five grants
ranging from $400,000 to $500,000 for a total of $2.34 million are
available. Applications are also due July 20th, 2012.