Vol. 17, No. 2 May 2013
Focusing on Child Well-Being
Bryan Samuels, Commissioner of the Administration on Children, Youth and Families, says one of the most important things we can do to help children who receive child welfare services is to increase our focus on their well-being (USDHHS, 2012a).
In response to Samuels’ leadership, child welfare professionals across the country are paying special attention to the social and emotional well-being of children in foster care. They’re trying to help young people develop the skills, capacities, and characteristics that will enable them to understand and navigate the world in healthy, positive ways. In particular, there’s an interest in helping young people develop the ability to form attachments, make friends, and engage in positive relationships (USDHHS, 2012b).
If you are a foster or adoptive parent or kin caregiver, focusing intensely on child well-being is hardly a new idea. If you’re like most resource parents, it’s a guiding concern in your life. For you every day is an attempt to answer a simple but sometimes challenging question: what can I do to help children lead happy, successful lives?
We hope the information and suggestions you find in this issue of Fostering Perspectives will help you in your ongoing effort to answer this important question.