Presentation on theme: "Latino Immigrant Families and Involvement with the Child Welfare System Aracely Iniguez California State University, Long Beach May 2013."— Presentation transcript:
Latino Immigrant Families and Involvement with the Child Welfare System Aracely Iniguez California State University, Long Beach May 2013
Introduction The largest growing population in the United States is the Latino immigrant population (U.S Census Bureau, 2011a). Currently, 52 million Latino immigrants reside in the United States (U.S Census Bureau, 2011a). An estimated 8.9 million of the total Latino immigrant population are undocumented (U.S Census Bureau, 2011b). Over the last ten years, the number of Latino immigrant families involved with the public child welfare system has grown exponentially (U.S Census Bureau, 2011b). The number of Latino families with substantiated child maltreatment cases has gradually increased from 17.4% in 2005 to 20.8% in 2007 to 21.4% in 2010 (USDHHS, 2007, 2009, 2012). While children with at least one immigrant parent constituted 55% of the total amount of children who are involved with the child welfare system, Latinos were over represented by 67.2% (Dettlaff & Earner, 2009). Although the information about immigration status is not collected by public child welfare workers, service providers, community agencies personnel, and researchers have documented that the numbers of undocumented families who receive child welfare services have been increasing (Earner, 2007; Vericker, Kuehn, & Capps, 2007). Risk factors associated with possible involvement with Latino immigrant family’s involvement with the child welfare system includes: poverty, lack of healthcare insurance and documentation, unemployment, limited education, language barriers, and acculturation. Also, once in the system families experience challenges that impacts their progress (Dettlaff & Earner, 2009; Lincroft & Resner, 2006; Hernandez, 2004) The purpose of this project was to design a program that encompasses the needs of the Latino immigrant families. Services such as parenting education classes, case management, support groups, and advocacy trainings would be offered through this program.
Social Work Relevance The proposed program is highly relevant to social work as its purpose is to provide services that meet the needs of the Latino immigrant families. This program would encourage social workers to develop or strengthen their cultural sensitivity and competence. Social workers who are aware about Latino immigrant families’ challenges are more capable of advocating for their needs. Also, the extensive social services networks and connections social workers have in the communities in which they practice allow them to assist families with linkages and referrals that are most beneficial to the client.
Cross-Cultural Relevance Given the high rates of Latino documented and undocumented immigrant families currently living in the United States who are involved in the child welfare system, the proposed program would address the particular needs of this population to decrease these numbers. Latino immigrant families are impacted by federal and state level anti- immigrant policies and, as a result several programs serving this vulnerable population have been cut (Dettlaff, Earner, and Phillips, 2009). Due to the predominant Latino population at The Whole Child, this program would be culturally sensitive toward immigrant families. Staff would participate in trainings about cultural competence.
Methods Target Population- The proposed program will be implemented at The Whole Child agency in Whittier, California. The Familias Unidas (United Families) program will provide services in The Whole Child’s Service Planning Area (SPA) 7. According to The Whole Child Agency (2012) annual report, they served a total of 2,822 children and families during the fiscal year. There is an overrepresentation of Spanish speaking only Latino clients with low-income backgrounds at The Whole Child. Currently, there are 83,680 people living in the city of Whittier and an estimated 56% of the total population of Whittier is Latino (Whittier Population and Demographics, 2012). Strategies used to identify and select a funding source- The grant writer searched for potential local, state, and federal funding sources via multiple methods for identifying possible funding sources were used, such as the Internet and foundations. An initial training on navigating the Foundation Directory On-line at the Long Beach Nonprofit Partnership facilitated the process of identifying possible funding opportunities for the grant writer. Key-terms were searched through the Foundation Directory On-line included: Family services, child abuse, prevention, immigrants/refugees, minorities, parenting education, children’s rights, and child welfare system. Five foundations were identified as the most compatible sources: W.K. Kellogg Foundation, Western Union Foundation, Carrie Estelle Doheny, National Children’s Alliance, Inc., Weingart Foundation.
Methods Identify the funding source selected- The grant writer selected the Weingart Foundation to fund the proposed program (www.weingartfnd.org). The foundation will grant a maximum of $750,000 and a minimum of $500. The Weingart Foundation offers grants to support and develop capacity and sustainability in organizations to accomplish their missions in the following areas: health, human services, and education. This foundation has a special interest in applicants who focus on the needs of low- income children and youth, older adults, people with disabilities, and those that are homeless. Since the foundation awards grants to organizations that provide social services and education, the grant writer considered this source the best match for the proposed program. Sources used for the needs assessment- Sources utilized to conduct the needs assessment included the United States Census Bureau (ethnicity, socioeconomic status, immigration status), United States Department of Health and Human Services (Children's Bureau), and National Survey of Child and Adolescent Well-Being (child welfare involvement reports). In collaboration, The Whole Child agency provided reports of clients served.
Grant Proposal Program Summary and Description- The purpose of this project was to create a program that provides services in Spanish and that are culturally sensitive to Latino immigrant families (documented and undocumented) who are involved with the child welfare system in Los Angeles County, at The Whole Child agency located in Whittier, California. The Familias Unidas program will offer case management services, parenting classes, support goups, child care, and trainings to this population. One of the goals of the proposed project is to decrease the number of Latino immigrant families that re- enter the child welfare system. Another goal is for Latino immigrant families to be economically secure, productive, happy and healthy as they benefit from the services provided by the proposed program. Population Served- The Familias Unidas program will be implemented in collaboration with The Whole Child agency in Whittier, California. It will targeted toward Latino immigrant families living around the Whittier, CA area. Sustainability- For the purpose of this project the Familias Unidas program will be completely funded by the Weingart Foundation. The host agency will provide the in-kind support at a total of $22, The in-kind support will include office space, supplies, computers, copy machine, printers, and telephones.
Grant Proposal Program Objectives- Objective 1: Within the first year, 50% of participants will have attended an 18 week parenting class as evidenced by a certificate of completion. The facilitators will educate parents on effective child rearing practices. Objective 2: By the end of the first year, 60% of the participants will have received culturally based one-on-one case management services. Activities that will be offered to accomplish this objective are: comprehensive assessments to determine the needs of the families, consistent face to face contacts, referrals to various agencies such as, Plaza de La Raza, Regional Center, Department of Public Social Services (DPSS), among other agencies located within the Service Planning Area (SPA) 7. Objective 3: By the end of the year, 50% of the participants will have obtained secure housing as evidenced by self- reports and rent receipts that the participants will be asked to present to staff. Objective 4: By the end of the year, 60% of participants will obtain an 80% on the parenting class post test. A score of 80% will demonstrate that the participants have increased knowledge about effective child rearing practices. Program Evaluation- The Familias Unidas program will collect data regarding clients served, the type of service that was offered, and duration of services. The parenting class facilitators will give participants pre-test and post- test surveys on the first session and last session of the course. In addition, face-to-face interviews will be conducted with participants regarding services provided by the program in general. The participants will be asked to partake in focus groups to facilitate the interview process. Lastly, client satisfaction surveys will also be distributed to clients upon completion of program services. The purpose of the client satisfaction surveys is to get feedback on the program, what worked, what did not work, and suggestions for program improvement.
Lessons Learned The grant writer developed many valuable skills during the grant writing process. To begin with, the grant writer did extensive research on the needs of Latino immigrant families who are involved in the child welfare system. Limitations that the writer encountered were finding reports and statistics about undocumented Latino immigrant families. Nevertheless, significant need for culturally and linguistically sensitive services for Latino immigrant families in general was evident to the writer while reviewing the literature. In order to locate a funding source the grant writer scheduled an appointment at the Long Beach Non-Profit Partnership. The writer selected five potential funding sources. Selecting one funding source from the five was not as difficult as the writer anticipated it would be; the foundation that was selected was the most closely related to the proposed program’s goals. Creating a program was both exciting and stressful for the writer. The development of program goals, objectives, budget, and a timeline was more complicated than this writer thought it would be. It was important to keep in mind the limitations while creating this program. However, it was also exciting to come up with a program that many Latino immigrant families would benefit from and that would best fit their needs. The writer was in great need of guidance and support during this grant writing. This writer experienced feelings of frustration, anxiety, confusion, exhaustion, accomplishment, relief, satisfaction, and happiness in no particular order, throughout the entire process. Nonetheless, it was gratifying to note one’s own progress and newly acquired skills.
References Dettlaff, A. J., & Earner I. (2009). Children of immigrants in the child welfare system: Findings from the national survey of child and adolescent well-being. Retrieved from Dettlaff, A. J., Earner I., & Phillips, S. D. (2009). Latino children of immigrants in the child welfare system: Prevalence, characteristics, and risk. Children and Youth Services Review, 31, Earner, I. (2007). Immigrant families and public child welfare: Barriers to services and approaches for change. Child Welfare, 86(4), Hernandez, D. (2004). Demographic change and the life circumstance of immigrant families. Retrieved on December 1, 2012 from Lincroft, Y., & Resner, J. (2006). Undercounted, underserved: Immigrant and refugee families in the child welfare system. Baltimore, MD: Annie E. Casey Foundation. U.S. Census Bureau (2011a). Census 2011: National population by Hispanic or Latino origin United States: Washington DC: U.S Government Printing Office. Retrieved September 26, 2012 from asrh/2011/index.htmlhttp://www.census.gov/popest/data/national/ asrh/2011/index.html U.S. Census Bureau (2011b). Census 2011: Changes in population controls, American community survey research note. Washington DC: U.S. Government Printing Office. Retrieved November 10, 2012 from United States Department of Health and Human Services. Administration of Children, Youth and Families (2007). Child maltreatment Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office. United States Department of Health and Human Services. Administration of Children, Youth and Families (2009). Child maltreatment Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office. United States Department of Health and Human Services. Administration of Children, Youth and Families (2012). Child maltreatment Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office. Vericker, T., Kuehn, D., & Capps, R. (2007). Latino children of immigrants in the Texas child welfare system. Retrieved October 4, 2012 from