Illinois Department of Children & Family Services
DCFS Facebook Page DCFS Twitter Page DCFS Homepage Illinois Governor's Website

DCFS Links Skip to State LinksSkip to ContactsSkip to Section Links

Preventing Child Abuse and Neglect
Child Protection
Foster Care
Day Care & Early Childhood
Other Services
Policy & Rules
About DCFS
Advisory Groups
Employment Opportunities
Inspector General
Contact Us
FOIA Requests
Child Abuse Hotline

(for international calls only)

DCFS Info and Assistance
(Advocacy Office)

Day Care Information

Foster Parent Hotline

Adoption Information

Youth Hotline

Missing Child Helpline
Illinois Home

Inspector General

Agencies, Boards & Commissions

Inspector General

Chicago Administrative Headquarters
100 West Randolph Street 6-200
Chicago IL 60601
TTD 312.814.8783

Springfield Administrative Headquarters
406 East Monroe
Springfield IL 62701-1498
TTD 217.785.6605

Media Inquiries/ Communications Office

Illinois Putative Father Registry

National Center for Missing and Exploited Children

Illinois Amber Alert

Illinois Employer Report Form

  Foster Parent Law  

2006 Foster Parent Law Implementation Plan Honors

On May 19, 2006, the Statewide Foster Care Advisory Council sponsored its annual awards and recognition ceremony for the four foster care agencies and one DCFS region having the top-scoring 2006 Foster Parent Law implementation plans. Family foster care is an essential service for children and their families who have been separated due to child abuse, neglect, or dependency.
Recognizing that foster parents are an essential part of and fulfill an integral role on the child welfare team, the Illinois General Assembly determined that there was a need to establish public policy regarding the rights and the responsibilities of foster parents. This policy is known as the Foster Parent Law. This law requires that each DCFS region and every agency providing foster care by contract with DCFS is required to develop an annual plan to implement the law. This Council (Statewide Foster Care Advisory Council) is responsible for ensuring that the plans are submitted and scored each year. Plans must score a minimum of 75 out of 104 points to be accepted by the Council.

The four foster care agencies and one DCFS region having the top-scoring 2006 Foster Parent Law implementation plans have submitted the following executive summaries.

FIRST PLACE TIE- Lakeside Community Committee
103.98 points

Since 1964, Lakeside Community Committee (LCC) has been one of the leaders in social services, ensuring that children and families are strengthened. The mission of Lakeside Community Committee is to provide a full spectrum of care to our foster children, foster parents and biological families and promote the health and positive growth for children, young adults and senior citizens.

We are excited about having submitted one of the top five 2006 Foster Parent Law Implementation Plans! Success truly is a team effort. The dedication of staff, foster parents, volunteers and stakeholders have created an environment that enriches the lives of children and their families. We say 'THANK YOU' to everyone's endeavor.

We believe some vital components to our success have been:
· Open Door Policy - Foster parents, children and biological parents are always welcome to see a staff member without a scheduled appointment.
· Open Communication - We promote open communication without the threat of retaliation. We encourage healthy, open and respectful communication and foster an environment where constructive feedback is welcomed.
· Reliability - To ensure the Foster Parent Council has a no cost venue to meet monthly, Lakeside has made its conference room available. Due to their prominence, the Council members are asked to take an active role during our monthly foster parent training meetings.
· Acknowledgement - In the month of May, foster parents (dubbed "Love Parents") are invited to attend the Lakeside Community Committee Foster Parent Appreciation Luncheon. We shower them with thanks, love and special rewards for opening their homes, families and hearts to our foster children. Our foster parents are an integral part of the child welfare professional team. Without them, this effort of serving families would cease to exist.
· Accountability - Although it is not a part of our contract, LCC has always found a way to accommodate our licensed as well as non-licensed foster parents when it pertains to purchasing beds, mattresses, and dressers to help provide a safe and comfortable environment.

Lakeside Community Committee has this great commission to serve the community and we endeavor to do so. Collaboration of services and teamwork have united us and produced a harmonious environment for all to enjoy.

FIRST PLACE TIE - Catholic Charities of Chicago
103.98 points

Teamwork is the key characteristic of the Catholic Charities Archdiocese of Chicago's Foster Parent Law Implementation Plan. This teamwork is demonstrated by the following:

  • Information sharing by staff and foster parents
  • Support for foster parents
  • Continued staff and foster parent training

Through quality communication between staff and caregivers and dedication to identifying and serving children's needs, Catholic Charities Foster Care Services staff and foster parents work together in a team effort. Caregivers must be willing to share time and information with team members. Casework and counseling staff must view the caregivers as equally knowledgeable partners and seek their input. All must acknowledge their strengths and their needs in order to plan for a child's future. Through support groups, emergency beeper numbers and various social opportunities, foster parents are supported in the challenging task of meeting children's needs. Foster parents share their needs with this agency by attending advisory meetings, responding to the yearly satisfaction survey, and giving input to Administration staff.

A solid knowledge base for decision-making is a key component for quality services. Information on policy changes, training for skill building and opportunities for social outlets are provided through presentations, in written articles and video materials, and through the bimonthly newsletter.

It is an honor to be acknowledged for our Foster Parent Law Implementation Plan. We continue to commit ourselves to excellence and quality service delivery to children and families.

SECOND PLACE - Hephzibah Children's Association
103.95 points

The past year of foster care at Hephzibah Children's Association has focused on the commitment to meeting the changing needs of the children and families that are served in our foster care program. Hephzibah is consistently carrying out its mission of using innovative programming to meet the needs of children and families. Through new programs, specialized training, and committed staff and foster families, the foster children in our program have been provided with safe, structured, loving environments for them to flourish. Hephzibah is committed to maintaining positive supportive relationships with foster parents and children in our program. By focusing on the foster parent's strengths, they are encouraged to remain committed to the children in their care.

THIRD PLACE - The Baby Fold
103.93 points

The Baby Fold views the Foster Parent Law Implementation Plan as a continuous quality improvement plan. Each year, we strive to provide quality services to our foster parents and children.

We meet monthly as a committee comprised of foster parents and staff (Child Welfare Specialists/Supervisor, Therapist, Family Development Specialist, Director of Child Welfare Services, and CEO). We monitor our current plan and look for opportunities to improve the plan for the upcoming year. Foster parents and staff are our most valuable resources and we appreciate their feedback and suggestions. We often implement changes immediately and incorporate them into the upcoming plan.

We believe that working together as a united team and striving for perfection in an imperfect system is what allows us to offer quality services to our children and foster parents.

FOURTH PLACE - DCFS Cook North Region, Chicago
103.84 points

Our regional implementation plan is the result of a collaborative process with our foster parent community. Annually, the region holds meetings at our three offices where foster parents, licensing and casework staff, supervisors and regional administration come together to review the plan from the previous year and make recommendations for enhancements based on our successes, challenges, and changes in policy and practice. Suggestions are incorporated into the plan and then implemented over the next year. Collectively, we work together to support the region's commitment to enhancing the lives of children and families. We believe that children and families must be treated with dignity and respect and that they have the right to receive community-based services that are culturally relevant and linguistically appropriate. We strive to create and advance an atmosphere of teamwork that is invested in achieving permanency, safety and well being in the best interest of children and families.

DCFS Features

Online Mandated Reporter Training
youth in care - get Goal'd logo
Foster Kids are Our Kids campaign
DCFS Newsletters Online
SFI Initiative
keep your family strong
Seasonal Influenza and H1N1 Influenza
Search the DCFS Web Site

State Features

Living in Illinois
Copyright © 2009 DCFS DCFS Privacy Notice / Disclaimer | Illinois Privacy Info | Kids Privacy | Web Accessibility | Plug-Ins | Contact Us