E-update Spring 2013 E-update Spring 2013


   Spring 2013   

Visit us at www.ChildNet.us        

Upcoming Events


Field Day for Foster Care  

June, 2, 2013 at the BB&T Center

Click here or on the flyer for additional information.



Foster Parents Wanted!

Click here or on the Wanted flyer to learn more about becoming a foster parent.



Interested in Adoption?

ChildNet Broward County holds Adoption Orientations the Third Thursday of the Month.  

 Contact Jim McElhannon at (954) 461-9219   for details.



ChildNet thanks our Field Day for Foster Care sponsors.


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Message from CEO

Every month close to 200 children are removed from their homes in our community due to abuse, abandonment, or neglect.  Removed from the only home they have ever known.  Taken away from their parents, friends, toys and pets and brought to an unfamiliar place by strangers. They come into the foster care system in Broward and Palm Beach counties through no fault of their own.  These children need and deserve a safe, loving place to call home during this turbulent time in their young lives. They need a safe place.  They need nurturing foster parents.

At ChildNet, our mission is to protect abused, abandoned and neglected children in the communities we serve, and as the Community Based Care Lead Agency in Broward and Palm Beach counties, we manage the local system of services and supports for our most vulnerable children.  As we recognize National Foster Care Month in May, it is important to shed light on the need for residents in our community to open their hearts and homes to children in the foster care system.  There is no doubt that this is the toughest job you will ever love.

Foster parents in our community are ordinary people doing extraordinary things.  They are members of your family.  They are your friends, neighbors and co-workers.  Their commitment and caring helps children in the system heal, thrive, and grow, and their temporary parenting leaves a permanent imprint on young hearts.

Unfortunately, we simply do not have enough foster homes for the children in care.  In Broward County, we have 425 licensed foster homes, but we need 511.  In Palm Beach County, which has the fewest homes in the state, there are 180 and the need is for 228. In particular, there is a special need for foster parents for our sibling groups, teens and children with special needs.

We need your help.  We are asking you to consider making a difference in the life of a child by becoming a foster parent.  We are asking you to help spread the message – tell your friends, family, and co-workers that we need more foster parents in our community.

As we honor foster parents during National Foster Care Month, please ask yourself this question, is there room in my heart and home for a child in need?

For more information about becoming a foster parent, call ChildNet at 954-414-6001 in Broward and 561-352-2501 in Palm Beach County.

Emilio Benitez, CEO, ChildNet, Inc.

ChildNet Recieves FIU Path Award

ChildNet was recently presented with The Path Award for Innovation by Florida International University's (FIU's) Robert Stempel College of Public Health & Social Work.  "ChildNet has found innovative ways to improve their workforce through performance management and data analysis," said Emilio Benitez at awards luncheon.  "ChildNet's use of the Lean Six Sigma (LSS) business methodology is unique in child welfare and has increased quality, productivity, and ultimately better results for the children and families being served.  ChildNet has used LSS principles to design initiatives that have helped case management reduce the length of stays for children in foster care, minimize disruptions for children awaiting placement and implement strategic workforce initiatives to support employee development and retention.  By virtue of ChildNet's success, our most vulnerable children are safer, more secure and their families are achieving permanency through reunification or adoption at higher rates than ever before."  Click here to view the video on ChildNet presented at the awards luncheon in April 2013.

Cyber Safety + Human Trafficking Conference

ChildNet and the Florida Department of Law Enforcement united to present the Preventing the Sexual Exploitation of Children – Cyber Safety and Human Trafficking Conference on April, 25, 2013 at the Rose and Alfred Miniaci Performing Arts Center.  Hosted by Nova Southeastern University, the conference brought together the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, Federal Bureau of Investigation, Homeland Security Investigations, and the United States Attorney's Office to provide information on online child exploitation, domestic and international sex trafficking of minors and prosecuting child sex crimes.

WANTED:  Loving, Caring Foster Parents

ChildNet has kicked off a Foster Parent Recruiter campaign to address the critical need for foster parents in Broward and Palm Beach Counties.  The campaign includes postings on the website and Facebook pages, media coverage and word of mouth marketing through ChildNet staff and nonprofit partners, foster and adoptive parents, community leaders and community members.  And, anyone can be a recruiter.  For instance, Laura Schoemaker, the Foster Care Liaison in the Department of Safe Schools Student Intervention Services at the School District of Palm Beach County, distributed foster care recruitment posters and flyers in all the district's schools and sent e-mails to her network to spread the word. 

The impact foster parents have on the life of a child is immeasurable.  Just listen to what Trevor, a 14 year old foster youth have to say about his One True Hero.  "My mom is a strong determined woman, she has been fostering for twenty-four years.  I have three medical foster brothers and one medical foster sister.  They all have different medical issues.  It's very different having brothers that can't walk and ones that can't talk.  But my mom still loves them and gives them a home.  I am used to it but it's still a lot of work for my mom.  My mom is one true hero to all kids that have been abused by their parents.  If she had not gotten me from the shelter, I would have been lonely and never had a second chance."

Circle of Supporters

ChildNet's Circle of Supporters Members enjoyed an exclusive cocktail reception at Ginny and Tom Miller's beautiful Fort Lauderdale home in March.  The Circle of Supporters is a giving society of champions, visionaries, advocates, and partners who donate $500 to $5,000 annually to make a difference in the lives of the children in care.  Their contributions help fill the gap for children involved in the child welfare system.  Members meet for exclusive cocktail receptions, such as the one hosted by The Millers, networking events, and invitations to ChildNet's activities throughout the year.  If you are interested in becoming a Circle of Supporters Member please contact Elizabeth Wynter at 954-414-6000 extension 8036.

ChildNet Broward County
313 North State Road 7, Plantation, FL 33317
Phone: 954-414-6000 | Fax: 954-414-6019

ChildNet Palm Beach County            
4100 Okeechobee Blvd., West Palm Beach, FL 33409           
Phone: 561-352-2500  I  Fax: 561-352-2480           

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