AVLF’s Standing With Our Neighbors program to help families thrive included in Casey Family Programs publication
Child protective services agencies exist to help young people who are experiencing dangerous and harmful situations–an important and worthy function.
At the same time, three of every four children that the child protection system deemed victims of child maltreatment in 2020 fell into the category of neglect, not abuse. Signs of neglect can often be linked to inequitable community conditions (such as a lack of access to adequate food, housing, child care, and other material resources).
Signs of neglect can often be linked to inequitable community conditions.
That’s why Casey Family Programs, the nation’s largest operating foundation focused on safely reducing the need for foster care in the United States and an AVLF supporter and partner, developed What are community-based, multidisciplinary preventive legal advocacy programs?–a strategy brief that highlights unique efforts providing upstream support to help families avoid needless involvement with the child welfare system.
Atlanta Volunteer Lawyers Foundation’s (AVLF) Standing with Our Neighbors (SWON) program is featured in the strategy brief. SWON, which launched in 2016 at Thomasville Heights Elementary School, embeds AVLF staff attorneys and advocates in the community to help stabilize housing and reduce school enrollment turnover. Since that time, SWON has expanded into nine Atlanta schools.
SWON embeds AVLF staff attorneys and advocates in the community to help stabilize housing and reduce school enrollment turnover.
The SWON program received recognition on the CBS This Morning in 2018, and today, inclusion in this national report demonstrates that AVLF’s work in Atlanta can serve as a model for other communities.
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