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Parents and Families Involved in the Child Welfare System
Parents, children and families connected with the Child Welfare System need special assistance to manage challenges that are connected with reunification. When children are able to remain in residence with a parent caregiver, intervention is focused on helping parents and children achieve stabilization, so that parents and children do not have to experience separation. The goal is to help both parents and children resolve problems in the home environment that may have been the source of Child Welfare involvement.

Parents have a very important role in the therapeutic process. The child’s treatment progress is enhanced when parents have the support that they need. When children have special emotional or behavioral needs, parents benefit from education so that they can better understand the child’s behavior and address it consistently. A “parent coaching” approach is often used to work on skill-building. Parents benefit from learning strategies for managing the child’s behavior more effectively at home while the child receives treatment. Often, parents and children are seen together, so that parents and children can resolve relationship concerns and parents can learn to help the child use coping skills that may be introduced in treatment sessions.

When children cannot continue to reside with a parent caregiver, the stresses that they experience are very significant. As an organization, NEOBH has an extensive history of intervention with children who require rapid intervention as they experience the emotional upheaval that often accompanies the experience of being removed from the care of a parent. Foster parents, kinship providers and, when possible, biological parents are included in the child’s treatment process. The goal is to stabilize the child and assist with adjustment. Parent-child treatment is initiated to help with reunification when the parent is ready for this important step.

Adults working toward reunification with their children typically receive a Case Plan from the Child Welfare System that highlights the concerns that may have compromised the child’s safety and security. These parents need special support and encouragement to make the changes needed so that they can successfully reunify with their children. NEOBH Clinical Staff help parents with the reunification process by addressing relationship difficulties, mental health concerns and other problems.

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