Adoption Network Cleveland: The Ohio Family Connection is committed to supporting youth currently in foster care and those who have aged out of the foster care system. Currently, there are approximately 2,000 children and youth in foster care in Cuyahoga County, with 500+ in the permanent custody of the county and awaiting a permanent family.
The Foster Youth & Alumni Hub supports youth/teens in permanent custody (those whose parents’ parental rights have been terminated) by providing them with life skills and preparing them for adoption and/or adulthood. It also works with youth who have aged out of foster care to provide support around safely and effectively reconnecting with birth family members if desired. Finally, it provides mediation services for cases with multiple placement options in order to preserve family connections for the youth.
Adoption Network Cleveland provides resources, from our organization and the community, that can be helpful for youth in foster care and alumni as well as offering guidance, support, and specific services.
These services include:
HelplinePhone or email support, available Monday-Friday from 8:30 a.m.-5:00 p.m.
General Discussion MeetingsMeetings for adults to get support, discuss and learn about adoption and foster care issues and hear various perspectives. Meetings are held monthly, and are in seven locations throughout Ohio and online via Google Hangout.
Get RealAn educational and supportive group for teens in foster care that provides a safe place to share experiences and explore feelings about foster care and adoption.
Cooking with Cuyahoga's KidsIn partnership with the Junior League of Cleveland, Cooking with Cuyahoga’s Kids educates teens in permanent custody about making healthy eating choices and provides cooking instruction to enable those choices.
ReconnectionsEvery-other-month peer group and/or one-on-one support for young adults who have aged out of foster care and are exploring relationships with birth family members.
MediationAppropriately trained Adoption Network Cleveland staff, acting as a neutral party, bring together all the caring and supportive adults in a child’s life to discuss and jointly determine how to best meet the needs of the child, and collectively reach an amicable agreement all the adults can support.
For more information
Contact Donikea Austin, Youth Services Program Coordinator at firstname.lastname@example.org or (216) 482-2334.