Training for Excellence in Rural Child Welfare
for Oregon and Alaska

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Portland State University partnered with Oregon’s Department of Human Services, Children, Adults, and Families, and the Family & Youth Services Training Academy at the University of Alaska at Anchorage to create a plan and curricula to train over the life of the grant 418 rural child welfare workers and 400 foster parents and community partners to better understand and implement effective practice to provide for the safety, permanency and well-being of rural children and families.

Project objectives included training rural child welfare workers in rural Oregon and Alaska in:

  1. Practice adaptations for implementation in rural communities;
  2. Practice skills necessary to implement key elements of their state’s Program Improvement Plan (PIP) to meet the goals of the CFSR in a rural setting;
  3. Strategies and skills necessary to build and support community involvement in rural child welfare practice and policy development;
  4. Strategies and skills to build and/or enhance effective training relationships and communication with the Tribes and native communities in rural areas of Oregon and Alaska.
The Partnership’s approach to implementing this Project included:
  1. Convening rural child welfare staff and community partners to identify rural child welfare practice needs;
  2. Developing a competency-based curriculum designed to cross-train child welfare workers, supervisors and community partners in rural child welfare needs;
  3. Delivering that curriculum both on-site and online;
  4. Evaluating the results of the training to demonstrate the relationship between effective training and CFSR-focused rural child welfare practice;
  5. Dissemination of findings to inform national understanding of successful child welfare practice adaptation in rural communities.