Although the CFA accepts cases involving families who reside anywhere in Detroit, the CFA's primary focus is on families connected with the Osborn neighborhood in Detroit, which has one of the highest rates of removal in the state. Funding for the pilot program is being provided by the Skillman Foundation, the Community Foundation for SE Michigan, the McGregor Fund, the Wayne County Department of Child and Family Services, Jon and Bobbe Bridge, Center for Children & Youth Justice, Casey Family Programs, the Dewitt C. Holbrook Memorial Fund, Quicken Loans, and private donors. For more detailed information about the CFA, please review the attached concept paper, powerpoint presentation, evaluation and video. You can also download a CFA brochure (PDF). Inquiries about the CFA can be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Empowers parents and extended families to care for their own children
- Captures lessons from direct service and applies them to system reform
- Provides a site for learning, practical application of knowledge, and community-based research for University of Michigan students and faculty
The CFA gives at-risk families the legal tools necessary to protect their own children. CFA lawyers, with the assistance of a social worker and parent advocate, use legal mechanisms—such as guardianships, child custody or personal protection orders, and educational advocacy—to allow family members to protect and provide for children without the need for expensive and traumatic out-of-family placement. The CFA also assists kinship and other caregivers to overcome legal obstacles in adopting or obtaining permanent guardianship, thus allowing children to exit government foster care.
With an emphasis on using private law remedies to keep children safe with their families, cases will be referred to the CFA by the Michigan Department of Human Services and others in the community. Once a case is accepted, a CFA attorney, social worker, and parent advocate will work closely with family members. Each individual on the CFA team will contribute a distinct set of skills:
- The attorney will guide parents and caregivers through complex laws and procedures, providing zealous advocacy, timely legal assistance, and follow-up support.
- The social worker will provide case management and help parents or caregivers access a network of social services.
- The parent advocate, someone who experienced the child welfare system firsthand, will offer support and advice on navigating the system.
By providing timely, coordinated support for parents and kinship caregivers, CFA is helping to stop the tide of unnecessary foster care placements. That, in turn, will enable the current system to address the needs of youngsters who require its protection and care.
An aunt and her nephews benefit from the services of the CFA.
Osborn is one of six Detroit neighborhoods chosen by the Skillman Foundation as part of its Good Neighborhoods Initiative. It is a community of 37,000 residents in Northeast Detroit, bordered on the east by Gratiot Avenue and on the west by Van Dyke. The northern border—8 Mile Road—is also the border of Detroit. The southern border is McNichols Road. Osborn is home to more than 14,000 children and youth.
Osborn has a majority African-American population (84%), a white population of 9% and an Asian population of 4.2%. The median income of families in the community is $32,421, with 24.3% of households living in poverty. Children living in poverty make up 35.7% of the Osborn population, compared to 13.9% statewide. More than thirty percent of families are headed by a single parent (compared to a national average of 9.1%) and 22.4% of children are born to teen parents. The infant mortality rate in Osborn is 13.9 per 1,000 (compared to 6.9 per 1,000 nationally). More details about the community can be found here. The CFA Osborn Office is located in the Matrix Human Services Center.
Please feel free to contact us with any questions.
3031 W. Grand Blvd
Detroit, MI 48202
Phone: (313) 875-4233
Fax: (313) 875-4313
Matrix Human Services Center
13560 East McNichols
Detroit, MI 48205