Support for Kinship Care: Child Welfare and Child Abuse Prevention Programs

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Child Welfare and Public and Private Child Abuse Prevention Programs that Support Kinship Care Providers and other At-risk Families. How can respite and crisis care be a part of a family strengthening initiative? September 26, 2018

Call Description: 

Respite care and crisis nurseries have been shown to be part of effective strategies to strengthen families and prevent abuse and neglect. This is especially important in light of the growing opioid epidemic and the increasing number of affected children and families. September is Kinship Caregiver Month, providing a backdrop to recognize the increasing number of grandparents and relative caregivers stepping in to care for these children and keep them out of the foster care system.

This call provided information about the new Family First Prevention Services Act that seeks to revamp the foster care system, provide a new focus on prevention in light of the opioid crisis, and provide new supports to kinship caregivers. The call also highlighted other private and public funding sources for child abuse prevention programs, how these programs can help support you in your work to provide respite across the lifespan, and how we can support their efforts to link families to critical respite services.

Guest Presenters

Jaia Lent, Deputy Director for Generations United spoke about the new Family First Act and the provisions that will assist families you may be supporting. The Family First Act will fund evidence-based prevention services in the areas of substance use prevention and treatment, mental health and in-home parenting skill based programs and participants explored how respite might support these initiatives. Jaia also described how the Act will expand Kinship Navigator Programs and how Lifespan Respite grantees and State Respite Coalitions can be helpful to navigators in linking kinship providers to respite services.

Amy Knapton Vega, MSW, Executive Director, Vanessa Behan Crisis Nursery, Spokane, WA described the services provided by the nursery, the families served, and how they have sustained their services for more than 20 years. She also described their involvement with Lifespan Respite Washington and how other state Lifespan Respite programs might reach out to similar services in their states.

Jessica Jackson, Program Manager, Community-based Child Abuse Prevention Program (CBCAP), Alabama Children’s Trust Fund shared how they use CBCAP funds to support respite for children in Alabama. Respite is identified as a core prevention service in CBCAP. To read more about CBCAP, see Child Welfare and Child Abuse Prevention Programs in ARCH’s Federal Funding Opportunities Guide.


Fact Sheet Family First Prevention Services Act

Kinship Care Navigator Programs. More kinship care resources at

Community-Based Child Abuse Prevention Program Lead Agencies

ARCH List of Crisis Nursery Programs in the U.S.

Nine Steps to Respite for Grandfamilies Fact Sheet

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