Birth and Foster Parent Partnership (BFPP)
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A partnership of parents advocating for policy and practices that benefit children and families
Creating authentic partnerships among parents
The Birth and Foster Parent Partnership (BFPP) is an innovative approach that creates authentic partnerships among parents who advocate for policy and practices that benefit children and families. The BFPP is designed to further Casey Family Program’s (CFP’s) 2020 goals focused on the safe reduction of the number of youth in foster care. Its purpose is to increase coordination between birth parents and foster parent caregivers for improved permanency outcomes.
The partnership is managed through a collaboration between the Children’s Trust Fund Alliance (Alliance), Youth Law Center Quality Parenting Initiative (YLC/QPI) and CFP.
May 10th Workshop: Partnership & Protective Factors
Supporting Parental Resilience
Partnerships & Protective Factors: Supporting Parental Resilience
The Birth and Foster Parent Partnership (BFPP) will hold a workshop on May 10th, 2:00–3:30 pm ET
Learn how parents and caregivers can collaborate to strengthen and support families in difficult times. Working together, families have more resources to be strong and resilient and to provide children and youth with the love and connections they need for healthy development. Using strategies from the BFPP tools and guided by the protective factor, Parental Resilience, we will discuss how practical and thoughtful steps such as responding quickly to crisis, using empathy, validating strengths, and providing timely support can help parents become strong and resilient. These positive relationships can serve as a powerful foundation to connect parents with their own values and strengths and to help families thrive. Seeing their parents and caregivers using protective factors in their own lives can help children and youth learn to build on their own strengths and draw on their own resilience in challenging times.
New Tools to Build Birth and Foster Parent Relationships
Introducing two new resource tools – Birth and Foster Parent Partnership: A Relationship Building Guide and the Birth and Foster Parent Partnership: A State and Local Leader’s Guide to Building a Strong Policy and Practice Foundation – created by parents and partners within the Birth and Foster Parent Partnership (BFPP). The Executive Summary offers a quick overview of the two guides which provide valuable supports to help birth and foster parents, including kin, build strong relationships and help systems institute policies and practices to support these relationships. In addition, we created a one-page “user’s guide” for how child welfare agency leaders and staff may consider introducing and using the Birth and Foster Parent Partnership: A Relationship Building Guide.
These publications were created with parents, in collaboration with the Children’s Trust Fund Alliance, Youth Law Center’s Quality Parenting Initiative and Casey Family Programs. Together, we’ve been working to highlight and develop purposeful strategies for implementation by leaders and decision makers at local, state and federal levels. We collectively believe that children and youth will thrive when the important adults in their lives build relationships and agencies prioritize these relationships through culture, practice and policy. We believe that partnerships between birth parents and foster/resource parents should be instituted as best practices in every jurisdiction across the country.
Download the BFPP Relationship Tools
- BFPP: Executive Summary
- BFPP: A State and Local Leader’s Guide to Building a Strong Policy and Practice Foundation
- BFPP: A Relationship Building Guide
- Recommendations for Using the BFPP: A Relationship Building Guide
- Chart 1. Building the Relationship
- Chart 2. Supporting the Relationship
- Chart 3. Keeping the Relationship Strong while Working with the System and Planning for Reunification
- Chart 4. Keeping the Relationship Strong after the Family Leaves the Child Welfare System
- BFPP: New Resource Tools Flyer
Transformation: Celebrating Partnerships
Sept. 14 and 15, 2021 Virtual Convening
During this two-day virtual convening, representatives of the Birth and Foster Parent Partnership (BFPP) discussed transforming practices to improve relationships and build strong connections. The convening started with Aysha E. Schomburg, Esq., Associate Commissioner, Children’s Bureau, ACYF, ACF, HHS, talking about why it is important to reshape foster care as a support to families.
Also, on Sept. 14–Day 1, a panel of birth and foster parents from Florida and Minnesota shared highlights of new state legislation mandating partnerships. The next presentation highlighted an innovative public/private statewide birth parent and resource parent initiative with the Oregon Child Welfare system. Day 1 ended with members of a BFPP National Workgroup sharing their perspectives and experience with the BFPP tools – A Relationship Building Guide and A State and Local Leader’s Guide to Building a Strong Policy and Practice Foundation.
Sept. 15–Day 2 of the virtual convening began with an interactive session with Vanessa Dorantes, Commissioner of Connecticut Department of Children and Families who has committed to supporting birth and foster parent partnerships. Next up was a presentation about the Washington State Building Family Partnerships Initiative. Day 2 ended with a discussion of communication tools and messaging strategies to help normalize parent partnerships and encourage a supportive environment to help families thrive through these powerful relationships.
Download Convening Materials
The following handouts and tools were distributed during the BFPP virtual conventing and are available to download:
Day 1–09/14/21 BFPP Virtual Convening Recording (3 hours)
Day 2–09/15/21 BFPP Virtual Convening Recording (2:43 hours)
Sept. 15, 2020 Webinar
Building Birth and Foster Parent Relationships to Promote Reunification: A Panel Discussion
During this moderated panel discussion, representatives of the Birth and Foster Parent Partnership (BFPP) and Dr. Jerry Milner, Associate Commissioner, Children’s Bureau, talked about Building Birth and Foster Parent Relationships to Promote Reunification. The BFPP’s resources – A Relationship Building Guide and A State and Local Leader’s Guide to Building a Strong Policy and Practice Foundation – were highlighted. BFPP birth and foster/resource parents discussed using these new tools to help birth and foster parents build strong relationships and to help systems institute policies and practices to support these relationships. Dr. Milner discussed the Children’s Bureau’s support for birth and foster parent relationships at the policy level.
The guides and their supporting tools – Executive Summary and Users Guide – are available to download in the Resources section above.