FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, August 2, 2022
Grassley, Hassan Propose Improvements to Foster Family Recruitment Efforts to Help Foster Youth
WASHINGTON -- Today, Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) and Maggie Hassan (D-N.H.) introduced bipartisan legislation that seeks to improve recruitment, retention and support for foster parents by fixing the feedback process and bolstering data collection. The proposal comes as most states, including Iowa, face a shortage of qualified foster parents – an issue that is only expected to worsen as child welfare agencies look to rely less on congregate care and more on family settings.
“The child welfare system relies on trained, qualified foster parents stepping up to care for children in need. But too often, the system fails to support these families. Our bipartisan legislation works to ensure foster parents are supported and listened to. Additionally, it requires states to use data to make recruitment efforts more targeted and effective. By making these necessary improvements, we can help more foster youth experience stable, loving placements and eventually have permanency. I appreciate Senator Hassan for joining me on this important effort to support foster youth and parents,” Grassley said.
“Foster parents open their home to children, taking on immense responsibility during what can often be a very difficult time for a child. It is essential that their feedback, and the feedback of individuals who have previously been in the foster care system, is incorporated into foster care programs so that states can build a stronger foster family recruitment system,” Hassan said. “This bipartisan bill will take commonsense steps to strengthen the foster care program, and I am glad to partner with Senator Grassley on this important and urgent issue.”
Grassley and Hassan’s bill, the Data-Driven Foster Parent Recruitment and Retention Act, is supported by 20 state organizations and several national organizations, including the National Foster Parent Association, North American Council on Adoptable Children, Voice for Adoption, Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption, Children’s Home Society of America and The Family Focused Treatment Association.
“Many years of experience tell us that the important work of recruiting foster families requires agencies to utilize effective, data-driven approaches. The Data-Driven Foster Parent Recruitment and Retention Act of 2022 offers much-needed improvements to federal policy by providing clear guidance to help child welfare agencies plan and implement best practices in foster parent recruitment and retention,” the organizations said in a joint support letter to Grassley and Hassan.
The legislation would update the Title IV-B Diligent Recruitment Plan requirements to make them more robust and require states to use a data-driven approach. Additionally, it would call for states to provide more opportunity for input from foster parents through foster parent advisory boards when making these plans.
Specifically, the Data-Driven Foster Parent Recruitment and Retention Act would:
Full text of the bill is available HERE.
If you are a representative of an organization that wishes to add its signature to the letter to lend your support for the bill, click HERE.
Click HERE to visit our Conference website and to register! Available online through September.
Here you'll find:
Executive Director Arnie Eby met up with our esteemed former Executive Director Irene Clements and current President Karen Poteet at this year's CWLA Conference! They are celebrating Foster, Adoptive and Kinship parents, and spreading the word about the NFPA mission and our upcoming Strength Conference.
Irene, Arnie and Karen at the CWLA Convention, 4/29/22
Executive Director Arnie Eby
Irene Clements being honored at a CWLA Conference event for her years of service and significant contributions to Foster, Adoptive and Kinship parents.
Irene Clements with April Michelle Rivera-Curtis
Current President Karen Poteet with Former Executive Director Irene Clements
Arnold Eby Named New NFPA Executive Director
The Board of Directors of the National Foster Parent Association is pleased to announce the selection of Arnold Eby as our new Executive Director effective January 1, 2022.
Eby has already begun working with NFPA and our current Executive Director, Irene Clements, to affect a seamless administrative transition.
Eby is known as 'Mr. Arnold' to over 130 children in foster care that joined the Eby family over the years; ‘The Monster' in roughly one million (and counting) games of monster tag; and as just 'Arnie' to his friends. He has been married to his wife Donna for 30 years, and together they have been foster parents for over 20 years, including three foster children (ages 5, 7 & 9) through the COVID-19 pandemic. They are the parents to three daughters and three sons, four of which are adopted from the foster care system.
Arnie most recently served as the Executive Director of the Maryland Resource Parent Association (MRPA) and has been involved with MRPA in various capacities since its inception 17 years ago. He is also the past Chair of the Maryland Children’s Justice Act Committee, and serves on multiple other national, state, and local government committees, including as the current Public Policy Chair for the National Foster Parent Association. The NFPA is excited to bring Arnie's leadership and expertise onboard.
Please join us in welcoming Arnold “Arnie” Eby to the National Foster Parent Association!
Paycom Software Donates $25,000 to the NFPA!
OKLAHOMA CITY (Dec. 1, 2021) – Paycom Software, Inc., (NYSE:PAYC), a leading provider of comprehensive, cloud-based human capital management software, donated $25,000 to The National Foster Parent Association to help provide foster families opportunities for advocacy, networking and education.
Read the full press release HERE.
Are you looking for quality training opportunities for Foster, Kinship and Adoptive parents that are ONLINE, FREE and targeted to your specific needs?
Then be sure to have a look at NFPAti! There are dozens of valuable training sessions that you can take - on your schedule, when it's convenient.
You will receive a Training Certificate when each course is completed.
Visit the Training Institute now to enroll in the session - or sessions - that are of most value to YOU!
NFPA has an important mission to support the care givers of our nation's most vulnerable children and youth. What can you do?
WALK ME HOME
Walk Me Home.... to the place I belong is the signature fund-raising and awareness event for foster care in America. We know not everyone can be a foster parent, but Walk Me Home is a great way to support the over 437,000 children in foster care.
This year thousands and thousands of walkers will participate in Walk Me Home events across the country, raising funds to support the life changing programs and activities of foster care associations throughout the United States.
Learn more about how to get involved here.
The National Foster Parent Association is a non-profit, volunteer organization established in 1972 as a result of the concerns of several independent groups that felt the country needed a national organization to meet the needs of foster families in the United States.
This mission of the NFPA is to be a respected national voice for foster, kinship, and adoptive families through networking, education, and advocacy.
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