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RHF Hosts 5th Annual
NYS Permanency Summit &
Family First Readiness Convening

Together with OCFS and Casey Family Programs, RHF hosted its 5th Annual Permanency Summit in Albany on December 3rd and 4th. More than 180 leaders from 16 counties attended, with representatives from local districts of social services, family court, provider agencies, families of origin, caregivers and advocates. This year, the Summit focused on the theme “Prevention is Permanency,” highlighting services and strategies to prevent unnecessary entries into foster care as the paramount permanency goal. Session highlights included: new research findings on poverty and child welfare with Dr. Roy Wade; perspectives from impacted families on effective prevention programs; a roadmap for assessing your county’s preventive services array; and methods to prevent step-ups to residential care for high-needs teens, among others. The Summit also had a particular focus on hearing from families and caregivers who have experienced the system firsthand to move toward a more family-driven system overall.

Directly following the Permanency Summit on December 4th, RHF hosted an afternoon convening and invited the 26 counties receiving individualized technical assistance as part of Family First Readiness and the Transition Fund. The hands-on sessions were designed to provide concrete strategies to meet the counties’ goals to reduce congregate care placements and increase certified kinship care. Session themes included: improving practice for kinship families involved in safety plans, 1017 placements and approved relative homes; effectively serving teens and JD/PINS in home and community; and strengthening community supports to decrease congregate care. Following a townhall with OCFS Commissioner Sheila Poole and Deputy Commissioner Lisa Ghartey Ogundimu, counties attended sessions where they shared their progress with one another and collaborated on methods to overcome implementation barriers. Counties continue to demonstrate incredible energy and commitment to achieving Family First readiness!  

Newest Foundation Grants

Center for Court Innovation (CCI) 
CCI works to improve the justice system through research and innovative reform initiatives. RHF is pleased to support CCI with a commitment of $500,000 over three years to collaborate with OCA and a county judge to develop a new model to serve youth ages 12-18 in family court. The goals are to preserve home-based placements, address their mental health needs and reduce congregate care reliance.

Rise builds the leadership of child welfare-affected parents to create a future where community is strong for families under stress and child welfare involvement is rare, just and healing. RHF’s $50,000 grant will be used to expand the Rise & Shine program and also to provide technical assistance to RHF as we launch our own Parent & Youth Advisory Board.

Chronicle for Social Change
The Chronicle for Social Change covers child welfare issues in New York and across the country, in order to heighten public discourse among the media, stakeholders and policymakers. The Chronicle plans to hire a full-time, Albany-based reporter with RHF’s two-year grant of $160,000.

Adoptive and Foster Family Coalition (AFFCNY)
RHF is pleased to renew a general operating grant of $200,000 over two years that will support the Coalition’s expansion of services and advocacy for foster, adoptive and kinship caregivers throughout the state. 
Copyright © 2018 Redlich Horwitz Foundation, All rights reserved.

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