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Involving Youth in Permanency Efforts The Foundation of Successful Permanency California Youth Connection.

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Presentation on theme: "Involving Youth in Permanency Efforts The Foundation of Successful Permanency California Youth Connection."— Presentation transcript:

1 Involving Youth in Permanency Efforts The Foundation of Successful Permanency California Youth Connection

2 Why Involve Youth? It’s Our Life!It’s Our Life! Youth Deserve to Be Centrally Involved In their LivesYouth Deserve to Be Centrally Involved In their Lives Differing Ideas about the Meanings and Needs for PermanenceDiffering Ideas about the Meanings and Needs for Permanence Youth Will Resist Plans Made About Them, Without ThemYouth Will Resist Plans Made About Them, Without Them Youth Have Expert KnowledgeYouth Have Expert Knowledge

3 How Youth Involvement Can Impact Permanency Work Defining Permanency: Siblings, Children, Definition of FamilyDefining Permanency: Siblings, Children, Definition of Family Opportunities for Healing and GrowthOpportunities for Healing and Growth Provides Resource for WorkersProvides Resource for Workers We’re Fun to Work With!We’re Fun to Work With! New creative ideas and leadersNew creative ideas and leaders Spreading the messageSpreading the message

4 California’s Law on Youth Involvement AB 408 (Chapter 813, Statutes of 2003) requires social workers to ask youth aged 10 or older in group homes about any important relationships and take steps to maintain these relationships.AB 408 (Chapter 813, Statutes of 2003) requires social workers to ask youth aged 10 or older in group homes about any important relationships and take steps to maintain these relationships. Requires the court to determine whether agency has made reasonable effort to maintain identified relationships.Requires the court to determine whether agency has made reasonable effort to maintain identified relationships. Requires court to make a formal finding of why any youth over the age of 10 is not at a court hearing.Requires court to make a formal finding of why any youth over the age of 10 is not at a court hearing.

5 California’s Law On Youth Involvement AB 1412 (Chapter 640, Statutes of 2005) specifies a phased-in expansion of AB 408 beginning with youth in non-relative placements.AB 1412 (Chapter 640, Statutes of 2005) specifies a phased-in expansion of AB 408 beginning with youth in non-relative placements. Provides that every foster youth has the right to be involved in development of case plan and permanency plan.Provides that every foster youth has the right to be involved in development of case plan and permanency plan. Includes youth as a team member to develop case plan.Includes youth as a team member to develop case plan. Allows youth over the age of 12 to review their case plan.Allows youth over the age of 12 to review their case plan. Requires that a youth’s case plan includes statement of the child’s wishes regarding their permanent placement and an assessment of those wishes.Requires that a youth’s case plan includes statement of the child’s wishes regarding their permanent placement and an assessment of those wishes.

6 So, What’s the Problem?? Can Be Difficult Emotionally and Practically for AdultsCan Be Difficult Emotionally and Practically for Adults Requires Changing Paradigm/Power Dynamics of Social Work and Learning New Skills and ToolsRequires Changing Paradigm/Power Dynamics of Social Work and Learning New Skills and Tools Requires Investment in YouthRequires Investment in Youth Requires Different Use of Time and ResourcesRequires Different Use of Time and Resources System Barriers: Turnover, Caseloads, etc.System Barriers: Turnover, Caseloads, etc.

7 When to Engage Youth? All the time at every level!All the time at every level! All ages: Differing Developmental ApproachesAll ages: Differing Developmental Approaches Every forum: case plans, staffings, court hearings, TDMs, placements, etc.Every forum: case plans, staffings, court hearings, TDMs, placements, etc. Every Level: Individual and SystemsEvery Level: Individual and Systems AS EARLY AS POSSIBLE!AS EARLY AS POSSIBLE!

8 Involving Youth In Individual Cases Support: Pre and Post Therapeutic and/or relational support for feelings that will ariseSupport: Pre and Post Therapeutic and/or relational support for feelings that will arise Explaining Your Role: What your role in youth’s permanency work is, frequency of contact, type of issues you can help withExplaining Your Role: What your role in youth’s permanency work is, frequency of contact, type of issues you can help with Developing Youth’s Ability to Be a Self- Advocate/Decision Maker: Youth’s rights, self- advocacy skills, discussing power experiencesDeveloping Youth’s Ability to Be a Self- Advocate/Decision Maker: Youth’s rights, self- advocacy skills, discussing power experiences Listen Thoughtfully and RespectListen Thoughtfully and Respect

9 Involving Youth In Individual Cases Building Youth’s Power with Information: Full Disclosure, choices, explanation of who, what, when, why.Building Youth’s Power with Information: Full Disclosure, choices, explanation of who, what, when, why. No Lingo: Speak to youth about their case without complicated social work or legal lingo.No Lingo: Speak to youth about their case without complicated social work or legal lingo. RoleplayingRoleplaying Creative and Artistic Expression: collages, scrapbooks, poetryCreative and Artistic Expression: collages, scrapbooks, poetry Logistics!Logistics! Measure Youth SatisfactionMeasure Youth Satisfaction

10 Involving Youth in System Permanency Efforts Invest in Preparation: leadership development for meaningful preparationInvest in Preparation: leadership development for meaningful preparation Be Aware of Power Dynamics on Both SidesBe Aware of Power Dynamics on Both Sides Make Needed Internal ChangesMake Needed Internal Changes –Hours for Meetings –Transportation –Food –Agency staff preparation/training –Language –Meeting Formats

11 Resources Y.O.U.T.H. Social Worker Training ProjectY.O.U.T.H. Social Worker Training Project Digital StoriesDigital Stories CPYP/CYC Permanency ReportCPYP/CYC Permanency Report Bob Lewis’ MaterialBob Lewis’ Material CYC ChaptersCYC Chapters Youth You’re Working With!Youth You’re Working With!

12 This is the Biggest Impact You Can Make and Youth Depend On You! Keep Up the Good Work! California Permanency for Youth Project 2006 Annual Conference California Youth Connection, 2006 Jennifer Rodriguez: ext. 23


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