Baltimore, MD (Vocus) October 3, 2009
On Wednesday, October 7th, a coalition of child welfare, adoption, healthcare and education leaders will announce a nationwide effort to fully implement the Fostering Connections Act, the most comprehensive federal reforms to child welfare policy in over a decade. The announcement, which will include the launch of a new resource center, is being held on the first anniversary of the passage of the law that requires safe, permanent families for foster youth, and improvement in their overall well-being, by addressing healthcare needs and educational stability.
The new Fostering Connections Resource Center will provide nonpartisan, timely, and reliable information to support state and local decision makers as they move forward with implementation of the Fostering Connections Act. The Resource Center will incorporate in a central location a range of data, online tools, and technical support on all aspects of the Fostering Connections Act. The Resource Center will also provide access to national networks of state-based and local stakeholders organized according to the six major topic areas of the law – adoption, kinship, older youth, Tribal child welfare, health, and education. Through its networks, the Resource Center will disseminate materials and provide ongoing expertise to state policymakers and administrators.
WHAT: Audio press conference on the Fostering Connections to Success and Increasing Adoptions Act
WHEN: October 7, 2009 from 1:00PM-2:00PM EST
WHO: Regina Schofield, Casey Family Programs
Rob Geen, The Annie E. Casey Foundation
Diane Littlefield, Sierra Health Foundation
Jane Soltis, The Eckerd Family Foundation
Rita Soronen, The Dave Thomas Foundation on Adoption
Gary Stangler, Jim Casey Youth Opportunities Initiative
HOW: Call-in number: 1-888-259-2603 Meeting code: 466294
While some progress has been made toward implementation of the law in its first year, many states have reported difficulty with fulfilling the obligations of the Act, such as new requirements for state child welfare agencies to coordinate with local education agencies and state health plans. In addition, state officials have expressed the need for clarity or additional guidance from federal officials.
The Fostering Connections Resource Center coalition includes the Annie E. Casey Foundation, Casey Family Programs, Dave Thomas Foundation on Adoption, Duke Endowment, Eckerd Family Foundation, Jim Casey Youth Opportunities Initiative, Sierra Health Foundation, Stuart Foundation, and Walter S. Johnson Foundation.
For more information about the Fostering Connections Resource Center or to arrange an interview with coalition partners, please contact Marci Bransdorf at (301)257-7348 or marcibransdorf at gmail dot com.