When Maria Roehrkasse began applying for graduate fellowships, she could only access the online applications through a shaky internet connection. She was completing a two-year Peace Corps assignment in Panama. In summer 2015, with just a few photos of her future apartment and an adventurous spirit, the California native and University of Portland graduate made…

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At Kinnect, we don’t believe in reinventing the wheel. From the beginning, we have been motivated and inspired by other program leaders across the country who are using innovative strategies to transform America’s foster care system. Each time we think to ourselves, “Yes! They know what they’re doing!” it’s followed by, “We need to bring…

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Published in collaboration with Family Builders Network| Authors, Michelle Chalmers & Jill Jacobs The Issue Lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender children and gender non-conforming children are disproportionately represented in foster care. The ability of children to safely develop and express their sexual orientation and gender identity expression (SOGIE) has a significant impact on their safety,…

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Lamar Graham chose to age out of the foster care system even though he had a supportive foster family willing to adopt him. It was a decision the Franklin County teenager made out of loyalty to his birth family. “I thought adoption was a sell out and that I would lose ties to my biological…

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Published in collaboration with Family Builders Network Authors | Addie Ellis, Jill Jacobs and Kim Stevens The Issue Children identified as belonging to certain racial and ethnic groups including, Native American/American Indian/First Nation/Aboriginal, African American/Black, Latino/Hispanic, and New Americans/Immigrants are disproportionately represented in the child welfare system.[1] The disproportionality that occurs is linked to a…

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CLEVELAND – The Division of Children and Family Services along with key community partners have been selected for a grant from The National Quality Improvement Center to develop programs and best practices that improve the lives of LGBTQ youth in foster care. Children and youth with diverse sexual orientations, gender identifies and expressions have been…

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Children affected by the opioid crisis have a better chance at living with trusted kinship caregivers thanks to a $1 million grant awarded to Cleveland’s Waiting Child Fund. “This is a tragedy and certainly is an emergency,” said Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine of the state’s need for foster care services. The Victims of Crime…

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