FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CONTACT: Melissa West
November 9, 2017
(843) 278 - 9020
COLUMBIA, SC- Last week the Palmetto Association for Children and Families,Sisters of Charity Foundation of South Carolina, HALOS (Helping and Lending Outreach Support), and the Department of Social Services (DSS) hosted three Kinship Care Summits throughout South Carolina, with over 300 attendees, to train child welfare workers on the importance of these families and how to adequately support them through our system of care.
Currently, 134,710 children in our state reside in kinship care, a temporary or permanent informal arrangement in which a relative or non-related adult (also known as fictive kin) has assumed the full-time care of a child who has been removed from their biological parent’s care.
“South Carolina’s children and families are diverse in their makeup and this week we wanted to honor and celebrate that. Those who are caring for another family member are vital to our system and provide loving homes for children who have been abused, abandoned or neglected.” said PAFCAF CEO, Erin Galloway Hall. “By providing training for our colleagues who interact with these families on a daily basis we are ensuring kinship care families have their needs met and are supported.”
In Charleston on Friday, Mayor John Tecklenburg and his wife Sandy Tecklenburg shared their story of kinship care and presented a proclamation which named September Kinship Care Awareness Month in Charleston.
Department of Social Services Director Susan Alford joined us on Monday in Columbia as she shared her appreciation for kinship care families. Director Alford was also joined by Casey Family Programs’ Lyman Letgers who supports these special families nationwide with resources and tools.
In Greenville on Tuesday, summit attendees had a chance to hear from Representative Joshua Putnam who is an advocate in the State House for kinship care providers and the services and resources they need.
The event also honored several kinship care advocates and families with the Sisters of Charity Foundation of South Carolina’s Unsung Hero's Award.
“Collectively our organizations are working to uplift kinship families as a part of the Sisters of Charity Foundation of South Carolina’s Statewide Kinship Care Advisory Council.” said Stephanie Cooper-Lewter, Vice President of Initiatives & Public Policy, Sisters of Charity Foundation of South Carolina.
The Palmetto Association for Children and Families was created in 1986 to unite the diverse agencies who serve children and families in South Carolina and give them a place to exchange ideas, gain knowledge, and work to address issues related to the quality of care given to children and their families. Member agencies have the ability to serve approximately 3,500 children at any given time. The challenges of caring for these children are great. The Palmetto Association for Children and Families works to promote the best care possible for children.