The DCF program is designed to work with families who were referred to DCF and determined through assessment to need additional supports but not DCF involvement. The families receive services on a purely voluntary basis and the goals are determined specifically by each individual family. Staff provides the necessary wrap-around referrals, supports and assistance, including, in some cases, financial assistance for specific goal oriented needs.
The families can choose to remain involved with their workers for up to 6 months. The program is so helpful that we are seeing requests to extend our involvement. Areas of primary assistance have included coordination of mental health services for parents and their children, registering for state benefits, securing City ID cards, assistance with daycare/school registrations and in one case assistance with funeral arrangements and supports for the children and adults after the accidental death of the child. This is a prevention model to reduce the incidence of youth in out-of-home care (foster care).