Weekly News Digest: September 28th through October 5th, 2017

Dave Thomas Foundation Releases Adoption Attitudes Survey 

  • The Dave Thomas Foundation has released their new survey studying attitudes about foster care adoption, a project the organization engages in every five years since 2002. More than 1400 American adults and more than 1000 Canadian adults were surveyed to gauge current perceptions of foster care and adoption. Knowledge gained from the survey allows the organization to better address misconceptions about foster care adoption and educate the public more realistically about this experience. 

DAI’s Reflection: Today’s families are often challenged to navigate a social context that has not always kept up with their evolving needs and experiences. Stigma, myths and misperceptions make it that much more difficult for kids today to truly thrive and feel proud of their family connections. It is critical that we all work together to ensure that society maintains affirming perspectives of the many diverse family forms and experiences that make up today’s world. Check out DAI’s perceptions studies that analyzed real-world adoption perceptions of the adoption and foster care experiences.

Chronicle of Social Change Interviews Senator Grassley

  • The Chronicle of Social Change published a Q&A with Senator Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa) who is the co-chair of the Senate Caucus on foster youth. Senator Grassley is in his 36th year in the United States Senate and the interview touched on a variety of topics related to the Senator’s long time involvement with legislation that impacts the child welfare, adoption and foster systems.

DAI’s Reflection: It is critical that policies are created with support the unique and ever-changing needs of today’s families. When families have the right tools and supports in place, they are better equipped to create environments in which children can truly thrive. DAI is committed to educating politicians and political influencers to ensure research based solutions are developed that build strong families.

WikiHow: Creating a Kin First Culture in Child Welfare

  • A recent blog post by the Annie E. Casey foundation highlights a new WikiHow that highlights seven fundamental principles to creating a kin first culture in child welfare. The WikiHow includes promising policies and practices with an overarching goal of aiding child welfare workers in thoroughly exploring kin possibilities for children in need of care.

DAI’s Reflection: Family preservation is optimal whenever safe and appropriate for a child. Using technology to support and educate child welfare professionals is a critical component of making sure professionals have tools that can best serve kids and families.

Birthdays and Adoption

  • DAI’s chief executive April Dinwoodie weighs in with Adoption Today about the many different ways adopted people experience their birthdays. For many adopted people their birthday becomes the symbol of the intertwined elements of joy and sadness, loss and gain, that mark the adoption experience. Ultimately, a Birth Day is important; it is critical that policies and practices always support an adopted persons unfettered access to complete information about their own birth and biological origins. It’s difficult to love all parts if you don’t know all parts.

#ICYMI DAI Blogs about ‘Getting Real’ in Adoption & Foster Care

  • As we approach National Adoption Month with a focus this year on adopting teens from foster care, check out DAI’s blog which focused on the need to keep it real in adoption and foster care. Research, education and advocacy are all necessary components of creating a context in which children and families can thrive with the supports, resources, and love necessary to be strong. Strong families build strong communities and this makes a better world for all of us.