Child Welfare


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BRYCS / Claudia Gilmore

Since its inception, BRYCS has worked to decrease the historical disconnect between public child welfare systems and refugee service providers. The need for coordination between child welfare agencies and refugee service providers continues to increase, as many agencies face significant challenges identifying refugee families, locating appropriate resources, and providing culturally competent services.

BRYCS supports efforts to increase collaboration and cross-service training between child welfare and refugee service professionals. Such cross-service trainings enable child welfare workers to understand the cultural and political context from which refugees come, so that child protective service (CPS) and child welfare caseworkers can respond with cultural sensitivity when working with refugee families. Similarly, cross-service training's can educate refugee service workers about child welfare and family preservation services available in a particular community, so that refugee service workers can in turn educate refugee clients about relevant services available to families.

Perhaps most importantly, cross-service training's develop professional connections, relationships and respect between these two professional fields, reducing misunderstandings and misperceptions and increasing collaboration on behalf of refugee families in need.

The Unaccompanied Refugee Minor (URM) foster care programs are an example of the positive service models that can emerge from an integration of child welfare and refugee service expertise. BRYCS has documented below some of the URM service models as promising child welfare practices with multicultural foster care populations.

BRYCS facilitates collaborative information sharing and coordination among all agencies serving refugee children at the local, state, and federal levels by providing consultations, training, and other kinds of technical assistance. Whether new to working with refugee families or a veteran, the following resources are a good place to start looking for information.

BRYCS Publications, Toolkits, Trainings & Webinars:

To see any of the BRYCS-authored resources on child welfare, visit the child welfare section of the publications page. 

Promising Practices:

BRYCS has identified and documented a number of "promising practices" on this topic.

Highlighted Resources: For Child Welfare

The following "Lists of Highlighted Resources" are lists of resources on various topics that are chosen by BRYCS staff.  Each list includes 15-20 resources that are frequently recommended by BRYCS staff when consulting with service providers and providing technical assistance.

  1. BRYCS Wednesday Webinar Series: Child Abuse Issues with Refugee Populations
  2. The Best Interests of the Child in a Global Perspective
  3. Child Welfare Training Curricula for Staff Working with Refugees and Immigrants
  4. Resources to Enhance Child Welfare Training Curricula
  5. Interpretation: Serving Refugee and Immigrant Children
  6. Family and Community Centered Child Welfare Practice with Refugees and Immigrants
  7. Guardianship
  8. Home Studies with Immigrant Families
  9. Working with Unaccompanied Minors from Central America