RFP Advances Continuum of Care Strategy
The Government of Newfoundland and Labrador is making great strides in enhancing placement options for children and youth in need of out-of-home care as it continues to implement the new Continuum of Care Strategy announced during Budget 2012, People and Prosperity.
Today, (Monday, February 11), marks the next step in the advancement of the Continuum of Care Strategy through a Request For Proposals (RFP) for staffed residential placement resources. These include individualized, group and emergency placement homes, which will provide high-level care for children and youth with complex needs. This new continuum of care consists of four levels: kinship care, foster care, specialized foster care, and staffed residential care.
“Our government remains committed to ensuring that our children and youth who cannot be supported in a family-based setting, such as a kinship or foster home, are provided with a caring and supportive environment that addresses their specific needs,” said the Honourable Charlene Johnson, Minister of Child, Youth and Family Services. “This RFP process will also provide an open and transparent process for quality services.”
The RFP outlines the deliverables, requirements and expectations for staffed residential placement resources, as well as standards around staff qualifications, training and programming. For those interested in responding to the RFP, the deadline for submissions is noon Friday, March 22. A copy of the RFP is available on the Government Purchasing Agency website at www.gpa.gov.nl.ca.
Other components of the Continuum of Care Strategy implemented to date include the launch of a new province-wide foster parent recruitment campaign, Foster A Future. Since the campaign began in November 2012, the department has received significant interest and support. For more information on becoming a foster parent, visit www.fosterafuture.ca or call toll-free 1-855-683-8111.
In January 2013, the department also implemented a new rate structure for kinship homes (formally known as Child Welfare Allowance homes) and foster homes. In addition, block funding was introduced, which is an upfront monthly payment per child or youth to foster parents to cover all social recreational costs, local transportation costs and the equivalent of one respite weekend. Block funding provides foster parents with the ability to be more child focused; therefore, having greater flexibility to make decisions.
“First and foremost, we need to ensure the overall safety and well-being of our most vulnerable children and youth,” said Minister Johnson. “Through the implementation of the Continuum of Care Strategy, our government is able to improve supports for out-of-home placements with an overall goal of eliminating the need for current staffed emergency homes, more commonly known as Alternate Living Arrangements.”
The remaining level of the new Continuum of Care Strategy for specialized foster homes will be implemented in spring 2013. Details regarding the overall strategy and the level system are included in the backgrounder below.
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Director of Communications
Department of Child, Youth and Family Services
Continuum of Care Strategy
As outlined on June 1 during the 2012 Canadian Foster Family Association Conference in St. John’s, the existing continuum of out-of-home placement options has been replaced by a new level system consisting of:
The new level system is scheduled to be fully implemented over the next two years.
Level 1: Kinship Homes, Relative/Significant Other Foster Homes and Interim Approved Non-Relative Foster Homes
Level 2: Foster Homes
Level 3: Specialized Foster Homes
Level 4: Staffed Residential Placement Resources
2013 02 11 11:40 a.m.