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What is Kinship ?According to the Urban Institute and U.S. Census, about 2.3 million children in the U.S. live with relatives with the majority of these children (1.76 million) being in informal kinship care through a family arrangement. The Kinship program was developed to respond to the perceived needs of kinship caregivers due the growth in kinship families, who often have the least financial resources and highest social service needs.
The Kinship program is federally funded by the Children’s Bureau and came from the passage of the Fostering Connections and Increasing Adoptions Act of 2008 signed by President Barack Obama. The funding is for a three-year demonstration project to assess the effectiveness of Kinship as a model in working with kinship families and includes an evaluation component. The demonstration project is design to determine how increased knowledge of available support services, access to these services, and better coordination of services through community collaborations, impacts safety, permanency, and well-being for kinship families.
Kinship offers the following county-wide services:
Kinship consults with each family to assess their unique needs and identify the most appropriate services. Kinship caregivers often find it difficult to access services on their own due to the complex nature of the service system and the extensive paperwork often required. Kinship caregivers need additional information and support to connect with services for themselves and their family members before crisis situations arise. Kinship Navigators increase family stability and reduce the need for more costly and intensive services in the future.
See additional information about our Kinship services below.