What is COSA?
The NFPA’s Council of State Affiliates is a vital part of our organization, and where the ‘rubber hits the road’ in terms of our direct interaction with every US State. They are instrumental in our ability to provide advocacy and education to parents at the State level.
State-Level Knowledge & Expertise
Our COSA Afilliates know their state’s particular requirements and the demands placed on Foster, Adoptive and Kinship parents. As a result they allow the national-level NFPA staff and Board of Directors to extend our reach into the local community, and they also continually educate us (at the National Level) about the needs of parents across the country. This relationship allows us to have a better feel for where advocacy is needed, where the gaps or new opportunities are for education, and to create networking opportunities between parents, policy makers, and experts in the field of resource parenting.
NFPA, COSA & CHAMPS
The NFPA and COSA have worked for several years in close partnership with the CHAMPS initiative, or ‘Children Need Amazing Parents’.
CHAMPS has been a 5-year campaign, with the following mission:
CHAMPS is a national campaign to spur policy improvements nationally and in states to ensure children and youth in foster care experience the highest quality parenting. CHAMPS is led by a coalition of partners of researchers, advocates, pediatricians, faith-based leaders, foster parents, youth, service providers and others.
CHAMPS offers a policy playbook and related tools to help improve efforts to recruit, retain and support stable foster parenting.
These three organizations have worked together to improve fostering across the US, with CHAMPS leading the way in the area of data gathering, reporting; COSA providing a granular, state-level view; and the NFPA providing a nationally-focused perspective and connection to policy makers who can improve conditions for foster, adoptive and kinship parents.