Permanency Tip of the Week: Leaning into the Tough Conversations and Challenging Relationships
When we face adversity in life, especially in relationships, there often is the urge to disengage and avoid discomfort. Many of our Youth are used to people giving up on them when things get tough and may adopt this mindset themselves in handling adversity. As the caregivers, providers, and advocates, we must resist that urge to disengage and rather lean into these tough conversations and challenging relationships. The message we send to the Youth is that they are important to us and we are going to work with them in response to the adversity. These “lean into” moments can go a long way in our youth developing trust in others as well as themselves.
Permanency Success Story of the Week: Child Welfare Worker Adopts Teen She Has Been Helping to Find a Family
NBC News – Latino – A dream came true for a local foster child who never had a permanent place to call home. That all changed thanks to one family who granted his wish, 24 hours before it was too late. Damien Cavazos waited his whole life for a family to call his own and he was all smiles Tuesday after being adopted into his new family
“It’s just real special, I got adopted and it’s one day right before my birthday. I’ve always wanted brothers and sisters and now I have them and everything,” Damien said. Damien turns 18 years old Wednesday and would’ve aged out of the adoption system, leaving him with no one to call Mom and Dad. Rebecca Cavazos, a child protective services employee, wasn’t going to let that happen. “They were unable to adopt him so Tuesday morning I walked into my boss’s office and I told her I’m not taking no for an answer and he’s going to be my son,” Rebecca said.
Rebecca had been working to get Damien adopted since November when she first met him at an adoption event…
Permanency Related Articles:
Child Welfare Information Gateway – Strong and Thriving Families
PBS – explores why some children are severely damaged by early adversity while others are able to thrive. By revisiting some of the abused and neglected children we profiled decades ago, we’re able to dramatically illustrate how early trauma shaped their lives as adults. BROKEN PLACES interweaves these longitudinal narratives with commentary from a few nationally renowned experts to help viewers better understand the devastating impact of childhood adversity as well as the inspiring characteristics of resilience.
Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption – The novel coronavirus crisis has created an uncertain environment for children waiting to be adopted and the families eager to adopt. The story of Erica Walker’s virtual adoption of her son, Dylan, is an example of the practical changes possible to protect public health while ensuring that the more than 125,000 children waiting to be adopted from foster care do not have to wait longer for a family.
Adoption professionals are taking innovative approaches to continue supporting youths in their care, understanding that their resolve to find children safe, loving homes must match the urgency of this moment. We implore judges to follow the lead of Judge Andrea Hertzfeld and others using technology to keep adoptions and critical court hearings moving.
We are calling for states to put a three-to-six-month moratorium on allowing youths to age out of foster care. Research shows that 1 in 5 teenagers who age out without a family will be homeless after age 18. These youths face an increased risk from the coronavirus because of close quarters in shelters if they are homeless, few opportunities for employment, and a lack of access to health care should they become infected.
It is up to all of us to use the resources we have at our disposal to ensure that no child faces this crisis, or any other, without the stability and support of a forever home.
Rita Soronen, President & CEO of the Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption.
Juvenile Justice Information Exchange (JJIE) – On a sunny afternoon in 2006, I was driving my four sons to a cookout in Newark, N.J., my hometown. We had stopped at an intersection when a group of teenagers spilled into the street behind us. They were beating another young man, and it wasn’t a game. My sons started yelling, asking what was happening. I sped away, screaming at my sons to sit down and keep quiet. My heartbeat was racing and I was sweating.
Later, after we had all calmed down, my oldest, Dante, had a question for me. And I’ll never forget his words: “Dad, you always talk about being part of the solution, not part of the problem. What are you doing about it?” It wasn’t easy taking in Dante’s question. He basically called me a hypocrite, and I couldn’t deny it. I was still trying to make it in the music business at the time, but for what? I needed to give my son a real answer.
Soon enough, I began building that answer. I started what became FP (Future Potential) YouthOutCry Foundation, Inc., now doing business as The HUBB (Help Us Become Better). Today The HUBB became a community empowerment center in the middle of the Newark neighborhood I still believe needs it most. I wanted to create a place for Newark’s boys, girls, and their families to learn, feel good about themselves, and get helped through the arts…
Neurosequential Network – Dr. Bruce Perry – This 20-minute video discusses the importance of regulation during decision-making. Decision fatigue and analysis paralysis can impede the development of creative solutions during times of crisis. A few simple guidelines can improve decision-making and lead to more effective practice, programs, and policy – especially when created during times of duress, such as the COVID-19 pandemic.
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