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Franklin COUNTY KINSHIP CARE PROGRAM

   
 

  

 

   

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Public Children Services Association of Ohio
E-Mail: pcsao@pcsao.org
Phone: 614-224-5802 
www.pcsao.org

What is Kinship Care?

Children are in Kinship Care when they cannot live with their parents, but live full-time with a relative or any non-relative who has a long-standing relationship with the child or family. Kinship care is the most desirable living arrangement for children who cannot live with their parents on a temporary basis or permanently. Kinship care helps children maintain their sense of belonging and identity with their family’s culture, history and traditions. 

Types of Kinship Care:

  • An informal agreement between family members or with a non-relative. This arrangement can occur when Franklin County Children Services does not have legal custody of the child.
  • Kinship caregiver – The caregiver has physical custody, and Franklin County Children Services has legal custody.
  • Kinship guardian – The caregiver has legal custody and physical custody. Franklin County Children Services will work towards a planned case closure.
  • Kinship foster care – The caregiver is a licensed foster parent and has physical custody of the child. Franklin County Children Services has legal custody.
  • Kinship adoption – The biological parents’ rights are terminated and the relative caregiver becomes the child’s legal parent.

Program Purpose:

The purpose of the Kinship Care Program is to provide support services to extended family members who become caregivers at FCCS case closure. 

When a child and his or her family become involved with the child welfare system, the added strain of this crisis can test the strength of the entire family, including kin caregivers. Successfully supporting kinship families requires ongoing partnerships with kin and children.

Program Goal: 

  • Help strengthen the home that has taken on new and challenging family dynamics as a Kinship Care Provider.
  • Avoid disruption and the possible return to open case services and/or placement. This service will be provided through financial assistance, service linkage, support groups and one to one counseling (when needed).

Staff: 

The Agency has a Kinship Care Specialist that holds the primary responsibility for closed case support services to Kinship Providers. The Kinship Care Specialist also identifies potential caregivers from the names provided by the family and service team/case manager. 

Franklin County Children Services Kinship Care Program will provide supportive services to eligible kinship families after receiving legal custody and case closure.

COMMUNITY PARTNERS: 

“Understanding and embracing the strength residing in communities is fundamental to kinship care. The community resources help prevent or reduce the impact of crisis for families and often offer diverse supports that may not be available within a public agency. Partners include faith-based organizations, places of worship, community providers of social and behavioral health services, membership organizations, coalitions and other formal and informal groups.”
(Ramsey County, Minnesota- Anne E. Casey Study).

Franklin County Children Services partners with the community to help provide support to Kinship Care families. This partnership is a contractual agreement with 5 different neighborhood Settlement Houses. A designated service team from the Settlement House works with the Agency’s open and closed cases to link families with natural supports that are in the community and serve as an advocate to help maintain the family’s overall well being. 

Internal Service Guidelines:

  • This service is not an entitlement and FCCS is not required or mandated to provide support on Kinship closed cases.

  • Franklin County Children Services recognizes Kinship Care as a primary service to out of home placement and/or permanency.

  • Franklin County Children Services will provide social and financial support to this effort based on available dollars.

Eligibility Criteria:

  • FCCS had to have held custodial care prior to the Kinship Provider accepting legal custody.
  • All families must meet the 300% poverty level for eligibility.
  • Kinship service is for FCCS closed cases only.
  • Closed Managed Care cases are accepted if requested.
  • Services are for youth through age 18.
  • All new families must be assessed for eligibility and re-assessed annually.
  • All families currently in the system must be assessed by FCCS annually.

Program Services:

Franklin County Children Services Kinship Care program offers the following services to FCCS (closed case) Kinship Care Providers: 

  • A clothing gift card is awarded to the family, per child (once a year)
  • A food card is awarded to the family ($200.00 per year). Caregivers are encouraged to receive $50.00 gift cards in increments to help supplement through the course of the year.
  • Bus passes (as needed).
  • Beds, Cribs and dressers (one time request only).
  • Deposit/Rent/Mortgage or Utility Assistance ($600.00 ceiling /one time only).

All one time requests require the Director’s review and approval. These request, are reviewed by the Director weekly.

  • Respite Care Support
  • Summer Camp enrollment

Kinship Support Groups and Workshops are held quarterly (child care is provided).

  • Dealing with holiday stress

  • Handling your taxes with benefits

  • Advocates for Educational Equity and Excellence (special needs)

  • Grandparents talking to their teens about sex

  • Mother’s Day appreciation

For more information, please visit Kinship Care Program/ Franklin County Children Services website.

     

 

KinshipOhio l Questions, please e-mail us: pcsao@pcsao.org