Vol. 12, No. 1 • November 2007

Staying focused in a time of change

There is a lot of change afoot in North Carolina’s child welfare system.

Just consider: a new federal law gives foster parents the right to be heard at court hearings. We have new foster home licensing rules. We have new information from the federal government about where our child welfare system is doing well and a new Program Improvement Plan to help us strengthen areas that need it. And of course we have MRS, the system reform effort that went statewide in 2006 and is still very much underway.

All of these things have implications for foster parents, social workers, and children in care.

But wait! There’s more. In addition to these system-level changes, we continue to face those changes that are a permanent part of foster care: the developmental challenges all kids experience, the struggle of children and their families to adjust to placement, staff and foster parent turnover, long-awaited court decisions . . .

This newsletter can’t make change go away. It can, however, provide information to help you navigate the swirling waters of change and offer encouragement to help you stay focused on what really matters: making a positive difference in the lives of children and their families.

Contents

How will new licensing rules affect NC's foster parents?
Helping children who have been sexually abused
What you should know about the recent federal review of NC
Important new NC laws affecting foster care and adoption
MRS: NC continues major child welfare reform effort
From the President of the NC Foster and Adoptive Parent Association
Honoring NC's foster and adoptive parents and their partners

Kids' Page: Monthly visits with my social worker

What do teens want from foster parents?

Books on the nightstand (book review)
A reader asks about maintaining post-adoption contact
If "40 is the new 30" . . . reflections on helping teens in foster care
Increase in teens "aging out" of foster care without a permanent family
Griefwork in the child welfare system
SaySo prepares for a ROYAL celebration
"I improved," a Poem by Steven
Fostering teens and their children
"A bridge in time," a Poem by Ronda
Help Us Find Families for These Children
"Life then, today, tomorrow ," a Poem by Ronda
Why is adoption important to me?" by Michael
Writing Contest

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