Welcome newest Federation Affiliate Member: The V.F.W. National Home for Children!

Welcome to the Michigan Federation for Children and Families newest Affiliate Member The V.F.W. National Home for Children! Located in Eaton Rapids, The National Home's community is open to the families of active-duty military personnel, veterans and relatives of VFW and VFW Auxiliary members. The family can be one or both parents with one or more children. They offer case management services to help families set up their plans and goals for the future; educational, recreational, and enrichment opportunities; community resources and counseling; free housing and daycare. Fredrick Puffenberger is the National Home's Executive Director. To learn more, visit their website: https://www.vfwnationalhome.org/

2020 Child Welfare In-Service Training Catalog

CLICK HERE, to DOWNLOAD/VIEW the 2020 Child Welfare In-Service Training Catalog featuring opportunities that are offered FREE of charge to child welfare workers and supervisors at private agencies that contract with MDHHS, as well as DHHS employees.

For the first time, these trainings are NOW available free of charge to FAMILY PRESERVATION workers and supervisors of MDHHS-contracted private agencies!

The Leadership training opportunities are on supervising a mobile workforce and secondary trauma. The Webinar training opportunities are geared towards both caseworkers and supervisors.

Please also help spread the word with families that you work with about the Caregiver-specific webinar training opportunities upcoming this fall on the topic of Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders.

All of these trainings are DHHS approved for meeting the in-service training hour requirements set forth by DHHS requiring all caseworkers to receive a minimum of at least 32 hours of in-service training hours annually, and supervisors 16 hours annually. Training participants may also earn CE hours.

2019 Federation ADVOCATE OF THE YEAR Award

Advocate of the Year is presented to a Federation member who has played a strong role in carrying out the mission of the Michigan Federation for Children and Families: to influence public policy and practice in support of the highest quality services to vulnerable children and families.

Khadija Walker-Fobbs, Executive Director of The New Foster Care, was presented with the 2019 Federation Member Advocate of the Year award in recognition of her consistent involvement in the Federation’s advocacy efforts. 

When thinking about a Federation member who is highly involved in advocacy efforts and systems change, Khadija comes quickly to mind. In the fall, Khadija’s organization spearheaded and convened a candidate forum to facilitate discussions to develop more informed voters. Khadija understood that both statewide and local candidates for office do not always address the many issues that matter to children and families involved in the foster care system, and she proceeded to develop a forum led by youth to ask important questions about foster care. Khadija was very involved in the Federation’s Annual Executive Legislative and Advocacy Day, maximizing the number of legislators and staff that she spoke with about the Federation’s state budget and policy priorities. Through The New Foster Care’s work at Fostering Success Michigan, the organization testified to the House of Representatives in support of increasing funding available through the Fostering Futures scholarship fund. The organization has also supported the Annual Teen Conference and the National Foster Youth Institute’s first legislative Shadow Day in Lansing, bringing youth voices to the public policy process, which is essential and a priority to Khadija and her team. Khadija is both a skilled advocate for her agency, and colleagues in the field know she is someone who will act to ensure kids, families, and especially teenagers, are equipped with the best resources to be successful and thrive in their communities.

2019 Federation AMBASSADOR OF THE YEAR Award

Ambassador of the Year is presented to a Federation member who embodies the core values of the Federation: all children deserve excellence, strategic advocacy, partnerships and collaboration, and equity, diversity and inclusiveness.

Cathey Prudhomme, President & CEO of Eagle Village, was presented with the 2019 Federation Member Ambassador of the Year award for her dedication to coming to the table at Federation meetings and events with the greater good in mind, strengthening and advancing the quality services provided by community-based organizations. 

Cathey was an instrumental voice at residential treatment contract negotiations last fall, developing a firm and respectful stance toward developing a contract with MDHHS that kept children at the forefront of treatment and services, while effectively communicating the needs of private agencies in being a true partner with the state. Cathey has been a critical contributor to the development of the Federation’s Legal Trust Fund, now serving as a Trustee, and approaches the role with thinking about how to best assist her fellow Federation member agencies in making use of this resource. Cathey demonstrates highly effective and thoughtful leadership for her organization and the Federation and never waivers to stand up for what is right.

2019 Federation LEADER IN CHILD WELFARE Award

Leader in Child Welfare is presented to a Federation member who helps to assure the Federation’s vision statement is at the forefront of all their actions: communities where all children, youth, and families thrive.

Jerry Peterson, Executive Director of Ruth Ellis Center, was presented with the 2019 Federation Member Leader in Child Welfare award for being an outstanding leader in the field. 

Over the past several years, Jerry has been entrenched in the community of Detroit where Ruth Ellis Center is located, learning about the needs of the children and their families who have come to the agency for assistance. When Jerry saw the community’s needs for more access to mental, behavioral, and physical health services, he responded with a call to action to build a center that did not previously exist and remained laser-focused on efforts to fundraise, construct, and develop partnerships to deliver services to completion. When the local MDHHS and central training team reached out for more resources and training on serving LGBTQ and diverse SOGIE youth, Jerry and his team responded with a robust program and willingness to respond to what the community needed. Jerry has been pivotal in implementing positive youth development, harm reduction, family engagement, and trauma-informed care strategies at the agency. Jerry’s contributions to the Federation are many, and his work is helping to ensure the vision that all children, youth, and families thrive.

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