Permanency Tip of the Week: Serving and Supporting Trauma Survivors During a Crisis
For some of us, the current world health crisis connected to the COVID-19 virus is the first time in our lives that our day-to-day lives are so completely disrupted, that we may think, feel, and act like we are in survival mode. For some of the Youth and Families that we serve, experiencing life in survival mode may, unfortunately, continue to be a very common experience. It is important for all of us to first realize our own personal signs of being in survival mode and work to implement healthy coping skills so that we can help manage our own thoughts, feelings, and actions. Once we have stabilized, we can then work to support those whom we care for and serve as it is critically important that we help them to also stabilize, so that they can continue to transition out of survival mode and into a thriving mode.
Permanency Success Story of the Week: Something to Celebrate
You Gotta Believe – Danielle Skelly and her husband aren’t afraid to welcome and love kids who have faced hardship, trauma, or loss. Now, they have officially adopted their 18-year-old son, Cristian, who moved in with the family in 2018. Cristian had lived with other families, and when those placements didn’t work out, the Skellys didn’t hesitate to welcome him into their family.
The Skelly family has welcomed approximately 40 foster kids over nearly twenty years. Some kids stayed for a couple of days. Some kids stayed for weeks. And a handful of kids have become permanent members of the family. Families like the Skellys embody our mission to ensure no child leaves foster care without a loving family.
With the love and support of an amazing family, Cristian is graduating from High School this year, commuting back and forth in his own car that his family gifted him. He has been accepted to Suffolk Community College and plans to enter the Licensed Practical Nurse program next Fall. What’s more? Cristian’s older brother, Josh, visited from Arkansas and–unsurprisingly–realized the Skelly home is a pretty great place to live. So, like many people before him, he decided to stay.
While there aren’t too many families like the Skellys who seemingly never stop inviting kids into their family, there are too many young people still in need of loving and supportive families
Permanency Related Articles:
US Dept of Health and Human Services / Administration for Children and Families \ Office of Child Care – Below are resources regarding COVID-19:
- Information about COVID-19 for CCDF Lead Agencies: Relevant Flexibilities in CCDF Law
- HHS-ACF Resources
- COVID-19 FAQs
- Information Memorandum on Statewide Disaster Plan (or Disaster Plan for a Tribe’s service area) for Child Care (CCDF-ACF-IM-17-02)
April Dinwoodie – It’s March. When I think of March, I think of Spring, Women’s History Month and St. Patrick’s Day. When I think of St. Patrick’s Day, I think of pots of gold at the end of a rainbow and four-leaf clovers. When I think about luck and being lucky in relation to adoption, things get very tricky, very fast.
In many news headlines, unbelievable adoption reunion stories tug at the heartstrings and blaze across the Internet. What are the odds that biological siblings both adopted by different families were in the very same writing class at Columbia? And how about the two nurses that worked side by side at the same hospital for years uncovering that they were sisters each adopted by different families and did not know it? We are moved by these reunions and I am sure many read these stories and think, “wow, they’re lucky that they found each other…”
New research sheds light on the relationship between childhood maltreatment and relationship problems later in life. The findings, published in Development and Psychopathology, indicate there are two pathways by which maltreatment leads to interpersonal challenges. “We know that individuals who experienced childhood maltreatment may struggle with maintaining healthy relationships throughout their life. We understand less … (READ MORE)
Child Welfare Information Gateway – This factsheet shares stories and advice from caregivers and birth parents who have experienced kinship care on the importance of maintaining boundaries, managing family dynamics, building trust, positive parenting and communication, and securing support. Relative caregivers may face certain challenges when caring for a family member’s children. A better understanding of how to maintain boundaries and respond to the birth parents’ needs and concerns can help kinship caregivers improve reunification odds and long-term outcomes.
Family Finding and Engagement Tools – An ecomap is a diagram that shows the social and personal relationships of an individual in their environment. It highlights different areas and connections in a person’s life and the flow of energy to and from people. The ecomap is useful in exploring relationships, involvements and activities in such realms of life as a family, employment, friends, religious affiliations, school, sports, neighbors, etc.
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Take care and keep up the Permanency work – Our children, youth, young adults, families, and communities are depending on it!