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CFACE’s Jeanne Preisler and Dr. Emily Smith Present at the Prestigous Kempe Conference

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The Kempe Center hosted its 2022 International Virtual Conference: A Call to Action to Change Child Welfare from Oct. 3-6. This event created an opportunity to debate, innovate, and discuss transforming child welfare and to re-imagine healthy, restorative, and healing ways of working with children, youth and families. The conference boasted 8 keynote speakers, 150+ interactive workshops, 40+ conversation circles and more!

Two CFACE staff members, Jeanne Preisler and Dr. Emily Smith, were joined by a member of the North Carolina Child Welfare Family Advisory Council, Gina Brown, and a partner from the North Carolina Division of Social Services, Cornelia Singletary, to share information at this prestigious event. Their presentation, Evaluating Engagement: Transforming the System through Data, discussed how the North Carolina Family Leadership Model (FLM) is evaluated. This Model focuses on family engagement, family leadership development, family-centered practice, and organizational culture and climate.

FLM was built jointly with families under the motto “nothing about us—without us.” This Model helps ensure that child welfare policy and programs include the voices of those with lived experiences within the system– whether as a birth parent, foster parent, kinship parent, adoptive parent, or young adult alumni of the foster care system. Jeanne shared a quote from another Family Partner which stated “writing policy for families without asking for their input is like a doctor writing a prescription without asking the patient what their symptoms are.” We couldn’t agree more.

Stay tuned for an upcoming story on another CFACE member, Dr. Joan Pennell, who also presented at the Kempe Conference!