$200,000 donation from CareSource establishes “health care friends” to provide mentoring and assistance to vulnerable families in Georgia
ATLANTA (March 14, 2023) – CareSource, a mission-driven Medicaid plan serving more than 500,000 Georgians, and Safe Families for Children, an organization that helps prevent children from going into foster care, today announced the relaunch of Safe Families for Children in Georgia. A $200,000 donation from CareSource expands the Safe Families for Children model through the addition of “health care friends” who will serve as mentors to help Georgia parents, foster parents, and relative caregivers navigate Medicaid resources, health care options, and assistance programs, as well as provide support and care for children in need. The goal of the program is to become a long-term mentoring resource to support vulnerable families and prevent children from having to enter the foster care system.
Health care friends work with families in crisis and foster families to understand and better access their Medicaid benefits while helping them navigate obstacles they may face obtaining health care resources, such as childcare or transportation needs. Health care friends also act as a family-like support system, providing parents and caregivers a resource to maintain and improve their own health as well as their children’s. An overlying goal of this program is to improve family life and prevent children from entering the foster care system.
“We’ve seen the benefits of Safe Families for Children in other states and are proud to help bring this resource to Georgia,” said Kellie Hans-Reid, CareSource director of child and family health. “The addition of health care friends will lessen the stress parents, foster parents, and caregivers face by providing mentorship to help families navigate the resources available to them – working together to address the needs of families in crisis and maintain a safe and healthy home environment. In order to ensure healthy outcomes for children, we must also support those who love and care for them.”
CareSource care coordinators and community partners introduce families in need, in crisis, or experiencing isolation to the health care friends, who can offer guidance and support.
“Children who grow up with their families often experience better outcomes in employment, education and stability,” said Dr. Dave Anderson, founder and CEO of Safe Families. “We are committed to keeping children safe and families intact. We are excited to partner with CareSource and continue to surround families with compassionate people and reduce the number of children entering the child welfare system.”
With more than 100 chapters across the country, the Safe Families for Children model has successfully kept families together and children out of foster care. Of note, other SFFC chapters have found that 79% of families who were offered SFFC hosting services were deflected from foster care, and 81% of families who were offered SFFC hosting services had their children in their home one year after the hosting services ended.
ABOUT SAFE FAMILIES FOR CHILDREN
Founded in 2003, Safe Families for Children surrounds families in crisis with caring, compassionate community. We are a volunteer-driven nonprofit that provides hope and support to families in our local communities. Located in 70 cities across the United States, United Kingdom, Canada, and beyond, we are motivated by faith to keep children safe and families intact. For more information, visit our website at www.safefamilies.net.