Readiness Assessment Tool for a Community-Based System of Care

While a number of child welfare systems are building continuums of ongoing support for adoptive families and guardians, there has not been a consistent pathway that assesses a community's readiness or assets for developing a robust ecosystem of post-permanency activities.  The National Resource Center for Adoption's (NRCA) Readiness Assessment Tool for a Community-Based System of Care is designed to guide States, Territories and Tribes (STTs) in building a coordinated and integrated system of care to assist families and children/youth both before and after they obtain permanence.  The assessment highlights components needed for the development of an adaptive and coordinated system of resources, communication, civic engagement, and advocacy for the development of a meaningful permanency support and preservation program. STTs can utilize the tool to assess their community-based system of care and determine where they can enhance their system through increased community engagement/partnership.

The assessment consists of six components:  1) Vision and Governance; 2) Theory of Change and Ecosystem; 3) The Importance of a Backbone Organization; 4) Leveraging Community Assets; 5) Parents as Civic Entrepreneurs, and 6) Evaluation.