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DR Grantee OK DHS
DR Grantee OK DHS
DR Grantee OK DHS
DR Grantee OK DHS
DR Grantee OK DHS
DR Grantee OK DHS
DR Grantee OK DHS
DR Grantee OK DHS
DR Grantee OK DHS
DR Grantee OK DHS
DR Grantee OK DHS
DR Grantee OK DHS
DR Grantee OK DHS
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DR Grantee OK DHS


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  • 1.
  • 2. A collaboration between the Oklahoma Department of Human Services Children and Family Services Division & the University of Oklahoma’s Center for Public Management
  • 3. Goals
  • 4. Bridge Resource Families (BRF)
    May be asked to…
    • Provide temporary care, love and nurturance to the child and serve as a mentor actively helping the parents improve their ability to safely care for their children while assisting in the transition to reunification, legal guardianship, or adoption to another family
    • 5. Serve as the legal guardian for the child while maintaining a child’s connection to kin, culture and community
    • 6. Adopt the child while maintaining a child’s connection to kin, culture and community
    • 7. Must be willing to work toward reunification with the biological family, as well as support and mentor them or maintain ties in cases of adoption
  • Statewide Assessment
    95% of child welfare staff reported there were not enough foster care placements
    • 45% reported they were not able to find placements in close proximity
    • 8. 69% reported they were not able to match the child’s characteristics with the foster home placement
    • 9. 35% of tribal child welfare staff reported that they were unable to find placements for tribal children in close proximity
    • 10. 59% reported they do not have services available to minimize placement disruption
  • Proposed Objectives
    Preliminary Data Analysis
    • Describe the characteristics of children in care utilizing information & analysis of AFCARS data
    • 11. Describe the types of Bridge Resource Families (BRF) who may be needed based on current case trends for different characteristics of children and youth
    • 12. Assess the current pool of available Bridge Resource Families (BRF)
  • Proposed Objectives
    Surveys & Focus Groups
    • Assess the pool of available Bridge Resource Families
    • 13. Analyze barriers presented by the agency or current process as perceived by current and prospective BRF in order to increase the rate of retention
    • 14. Explore barriers and identify possible strengths of the agency in utilizing a customer service model in collaboration with Rapid Response Teams in responding to the needs of current and prospective resource families
    • 15. Identify training needs for BRF and develop a gap analysis related to employee skills and knowledge of engaging effectively with diverse cultural, racial, and economic communities
  • Proposed Objectives
    Partnerships & Training
    • Assess agencies and community-based organizations that can provide services, including faith-based organizations
    • 16. Develop training for staff related to customer service, the BRF model, and engaging diverse cultural, racial, and economic communities
    • 17. Develop training for prospective foster and adoptive families and for involved court officials
  • Proposed Objectives
    Customer Service Interventions
    • Work with AdoptUSKids to create a rapid response center for prospective BRF, including a call center
    • 18. Create a centralized support center for current foster, post-adoptive, and Bridge Resource Families in addressing questions and problems
    • 19. Develop a 24/7 “warm line” to offer support to current and prospective resource families and post-adoptive families
    • 20. Contract for translation services
  • Proposed Objectives
    Increase skills
    • Enable personnel to more appropriately respond to children with special needs
    • 21. Teach BRF how to work with biological families to provide them mentoring and support
    • 22. Identify resources and processes for keeping children engaged in their culture and community
    • 23. Develop support groups throughout the state for resource family interaction and support
    • 24. Develop a formal mentor program in order for experienced BRF to work with new families
    • 25. Provide training, support, and information through technology and web-based solutions
  • Proposed Objectives
    • Partner with local organizations and/or tribes to provide resource family recruitment activities
    • 26. Develop media and print materials for targeted marketing
    • 27. Implement zip code-targeted recruitment efforts
    • 28. Provide training to BRF to collaborate with their local communities and faith-based organizations to promote BRF recruitment on behalf of OKDHS
  • Proposed Evaluation
    • Stratified random sample of all people who initiate the application process for BRF regardless of application outcome
    • 29. Compare BRF characteristics and variables based on application outcome
    • 30. Measure the effects of Bridge to the Future on safety, permanency and well-being for foster children (CFSR measures)
    • 31. Customer perception surveys to evaluate the experience of potential BRF when navigating the recruitment process with OKDHS
    • 32. Customer perception survey for families who participate in the mentoring program and/or utilize the “warm line”
  • Questions?
    Contact Information
    • Joani Webster – Project Director
    OKDHS Children and Family Services Division
    • Dr. Shannon Rios – Lead Evaluator
    OKDHS Office of Planning, Research and Statistics
    • Vincent DeBerry – Project Partner
    OU Center for Public Management