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Family Finding

Home » Services » Research-Informed Practices » Family Finding

JusticeWorks utilizes the Family Finding model that uses various strategies to locate and engages relatives of children currently living in out-of-home care.

The overall goal of Family Finding is to connect a child with a family member so that he or she can benefit from a family connection.  We use intensive search efforts to locate family members of children and assess their openness and appropriateness for possible kinship placement.

The core beliefs of the Family Finding approach are:

  1. Every child has a family and they can be found if we try
  2. Loneliness is devastating, even dangerous, and is experienced by most children in out-of-home care
  3. A meaningful connection to family helps a child develop a sense of belonging
  4. The single factor most closely associated with positive outcomes for children is meaningful, lifelong connections to family

The guiding principles of the approach are:

  • It Is a youth-driven process
  • Every youth deserves, and can have, a permanent family
  • Youth have the right to know about their family members; family members have the right to know about their youth
  • Youth should have connections with the biological family (unless there is a compelling reason not to), regardless of whether they will live with them
  • With support, most youth can live in a home rather than in foster care or institution
  • Family and fictive kin help develop, plan and achieve the youth’s permanence
  • Build permanency through reunification, guardianship, adoption or another form of permanent commitment.

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