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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Children & Youth, Children & Youth Services, Family Services, Human Services, Residential Care & Adult Day Programs

Mission: CWLA is a powerful coalition of hundreds of private and public agencies serving vulnerable children and families since 1920. Our expertise, leadership and innovation on policies, programs, and practices help improve the lives of millions of children in all 50 states. Our impact is felt worldwide. CWLA leads and engages its network of public and private agencies and partners to advance policies, best practices and collaborative strategies that result in better outcomes for vulnerable children, youth and families. Our vision is that every child will grow up in a safe, loving, and stable family.

Results: We recently led more than 150 agency administrators, directors, social workers and other leaders to Capitol Hill to prioritize vulnerable children and families. It’s the year's largest national advocacy event for child welfare, human service, and behavioral health professionals. We focused our efforts on critical issues, like: improving services and supports for older youth who are transitioning out of foster care; strengthening the child welfare workforce; and responding to abuse and related trauma in ways that allow children to safely remain with their parents or extended family when possible, and to recover from the effects of trauma. This spring we are publishing our latest Models of Practice curriculum, titled, Collaborating with Kinship Caregivers: A Research to Practice Evidence-Based Curriculum for Child Welfare Workers and Their Supervisors. This 12-hour program teaches public and private agency-based child welfare staff and community advocates how to work with grandparents and other relatives who are raising their younger family members because of parental abuse and neglect. Nationally, there are more children living in "kinship care" than with foster parents, and this model of practice teaches how to work with kin on a range of critical concerns, such as legal and financial issues, child behavior, family relationships, health and mental health, and navigating or accessing community supports.

Programs: Education and national advocacy cwla is the nation's leading voice for millions of children who are abused, neglected or vulnerable. Cwla advocates for public policies that benefit children at the federal, state and local levels. Cwla works with its members, partner organizations and other advocates and national organizations with the goal of improving the quality and effectiveness of services so that children, youth, families and communities can flourish. Cwla brings its knowledge and expertise directly to agencies and communities through its programs, publications, research, conferences, and professional development. Cwla hosts a bi-annual national conference along with national program and practice conferences, webinars and events that bring together hundreds of professionals seeking the latest research and best practice information to help them achieve better outcomes for children, youth, and families. Cwla provides professional development materials/training/ or topic specific institutes for professionals from nearly 50 states, the district of columbia, and in more than 20 countries. Cwla has developed and disseminated the pride model of practice for the development and support of foster and adoptive parents as partners in child protection in 30 states and 22 countries. Cwla supports the development of standards of excellence in child welfare services that provide practice guidance for practitioners who care for, treat and educate vulnerable children and families.

consultationcwla brings its knowledge and expertise directly to agencies and communities through its programs, publications, research, and conferences. These services include agency assessments, policy review and analysis, strategic planning, critical incident reviews and program consultation to improve individual programs, organizations, and large systems, public and private; assist public child welfare agencies and state legislatures in reviewing and redesigning systems based on research, best practice standards and assessment of local needs. In 2014, cwla provided brief technical assistance and indepth consultation to legislators, community leaders, and public and private child welfare agencies in more than a dozen jurisdictions.

researchcwla collects, analyzes, reports and establishes standards on data, trends and best practices in the field of child welfare, including prevention, early intervention, reunification, permanency and transition to independent living; cwla also disseminates information to members and the general public through publications, the internet and conferences to enhance the system of care for children, youth and families.

Community Stories

6 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

toddalandry

Board Member

Rating: 5

When I came into the child welfare field over 15 years ago, the first conference I attended was a CWLA national conference. It was the best way to learn best practices and engage with other leaders to improve the lives of children and families in our country. Years later, I believe even more strongly that our country's vulnerable children and families need CWLA. It is the preeminent voice speaking out for best practices and advocating for children. It's why I enthusiastically joined the board in 2010 and am privileged to serve as the current board chair.

Previous Stories

Board Member

Rating: 5

I continue to be impressed by the work of this small but mighty organization working on behalf of children and families. The recent National Kinship Conference is a good example of the leading edge work being done by CWLA. With an unrelenting focus on best practices, insightful and effective advocacy, and speaking out for what's best for children and families, CWLA is making a real difference for children and families in America and abroad.

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Volunteer

Rating: 5

I am a member and board member of CWLA because this is an organization that is committed to improving the lives of vulnerable children. Throughout its 95 year history, CWLA and its members have not wavered from that focus and commitment. CWLA's tireless advocacy work on behalf of better outcomes for children is exemplary.

Previous Stories

Board Member

Rating: 5

My organization has been a member of CWLA for almost twenty years. We joined because we saw CWLA as a powerful voice for the children and families we served who all too often had very few speaking for them. Twenty years later we are still members. That is because CWLA continues to be an organization that seeks to ensure that the many systems and agencies working with children and families implement policies that promote best practices and working together in an integrated, collaborative way. As a board member I know first hand the dedicated and committed staff who work tirelessly to build the public will to ensure the safety, permanence and well being of children.

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Volunteer

Rating: 5

As past President of the Board of the Child Welfare League of America, I can attest to its importance to all of the field of Child Welfare. It is said that if the League did not exist, we would have to create it. It is the voice in Washington on Capital Hill of all member agencies in the nation serving the neediest children in our country. It is their knowledge and expertise plus the input from their member agencies which greatly influences legislation affecting our children. It is the League which writes and publishes the standards of service which agencies use as their guide to delivering the highest quality of service to the children they serve. It is a convener of service providers so that they can learn from each other about best practices. It is a national voice on the issues facing this disenfranchised population. I have been proud to be a volunteer with the Child Welfare League of America and we should be grateful they exist as a voice for our children.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

This organization has always been the "go to" resource for all things child welfare. The wealth of referral information and resources is unparalleled. Their annual conferences have historically featured the most cutting edge and relevant experts and information in the field. Their recognition of targeting agencies and professionals outside of the child welfare system, in order to connect ALL the systems that touch vulnerable children, is both brilliant and critical.

Volunteer

Rating: 5

CWLA is a powerful coalition of hundreds of private and public agencies serving vulnerable children and families since 1920. Because of their expertise, leadership and innovation on policies, programs, and practices they have helped improve the lives of millions of children in all 50 states, with a worldwide impact.


Larry27

Volunteer

Rating: 4

I truly enjoy volunteering for CWLA in order to help it achieve its worthy mission. With the Federal. State, and Local government budgetary constraints, we need organizations like CWLA more than ever!! I hope you will consider donating your time and/or money to CWLA too!!