FYI • July 9, 2010 • No. 14

FYI • July 9, 2010 • No. 14
The next FYI bulletin will be issued July 23, 2010

STATE LEGISLATIVE ACTIVITIES
• Legislature on recess—Michigan legislators are on break, expected to return to Lansing on July 21.
• State budget update—Governor Granholm signed the K-12 budget into effect this week, giving schools the financial information they need for state aid as they plan their upcoming school year. The Governor exercised her line item veto by eliminating special funding to school programs in Pontiac and Saginaw. She also cut partial restoration of funds to high wealth districts under the so-called 20j spending plans. Appropriations Committee conferees continued their work on sorting out the differences between the separate House and Senate approved budgets that need to be reconciled. Administration and legislative hopes were dashed of having all budgets completed by July 1, well in advance of the start of the state’s fiscal year on October 1. Leaders hope that some of the budgets can be finalized for votes on July 21 and July 28, the only two scheduled session days this month.

STATE EXECUTIVE/ADMINISTRATIVE ACTIVITIES
• DHS communications posted at www.michfed.org—The items listed below can be found within www.michfed.org; log in with your user name and password and go to “DHS Communications” in the righthand column. Need a Federation user name and password? Contact jenny@michfed.org. Here is a list of items issued since the last FYI:
➢ June 28: Billing Instructions for Juvenile Guardianship Administrative Rate
➢ June 30: Mother/Baby Residential Programs
➢ June 30: New Fingerprinting Process for Child Welfare Foster and Adoptive Applicants
➢ July 7: Transition of Foster Care Children into Medicaid Health Plans
➢ July 8: Permanency Planning Conference (PPC) Data Entry and Training
➢ July 8: Case Load Count Letter

FEDERATION ACTIVITIES

FYI • June 25, 2010 • No. 13

FYI • June 25, 2010 • No. 13
The next FYI bulletin will be issued July 9, 2010

HIGHLIGHT OF THE WEEK
teenconference.png150 youth and adults "Took Charge of Their Journey!" at the Michigan Teen Conference —Congratulations to the amazing Teen Conference Planning Committee chaired by Laura Mitchell of conference fiduciary Lutheran Social Services of Michigan. The conference featured foster care alumni Cherish Thomas and Danita Echols as the Keynote Speakers, both with a message for the youth surrounding the theme of the conference, "Take Charge of Your Journey." Several vendors and community partners provided workshops geared towards independent living skills and planning for a successful future. The Walk through Life activity allowed youth the opportunity to interact with community resources and businesses and practice some of the life skills they learned about at the conference. Thank you to all of the agencies who participated and to all of the youth who made it worthwhile! We are already looking forward to and anticipating next year's event!

STATE LEGISLATIVE ACTIVITIES
• DHS Budget bill—The next step for the FY 2011 DHS Budget is conference committee, with no firm date set for finalization.

STATE EXECUTIVE/ADMINISTRATIVE ACTIVITIES

FYI • June 11, 2010 • No. 12

FYI • June 11, 2010 • No. 12
The next FYI bulletin will be issued June 25, 2010

HIGHLIGHTS OF THE WEEK
June 22-23, 2010 • MiTeen Conference "Take Charge of Your Journey!"
Contact conference coordinator and fiduciary Lutheran Social Services of MI
TODAY if you need to firm up registrations for this conference:
Reach Diana Ripley at dripl@LSSM.org or (800) 765-0541.

DHS key administrators to attend June 16 and July 21 MIN meetings. Read details within the FYI.
June 16:
• ADOPTION: Karen Iverson, Adoption Subsidy Office
• Joint LICENSING & FOSTER CARE: Jim Gale, Janice Tribble, Deb Buchanan, Christine Rehagen, Fran Cook
• INDEPENDENT LIVING/HOMELESS YOUTH: Sherie Bailey, YIT Office
July 21:
• RESIDENTIAL TREATMENT: Jim Gale

Vistas Nuevas Head Start Celebrates Culture in the Community

matrix.jpgVistas Nuevas Head Start, a program of Matrix Human Services will host its’ annual Celebrations of Culture Parade on Thursday, June 3, 2010 at 10am. More than 1400 head start children will march from Holy Redeemer Church to Clark Park in celebration of the various cultures in the Detroit community.

The Celebrations of Culture Parade will represent several countries around globe in support the diversity that is among all of us each and every day. Those countries include: Spain, Trinidad and Tabago, Hawaii, Ecuador, Ghana, Mexico, Scotland, Puerto Rico, Native American, Lebanon, Brazil, France, Portugal.

Vistas Nuevas Head Start is the largest head start program in the city of Detroit. Vistas’ has more than 1400 children annually, teaches in 3 languages (English, Spanish and Arabic) and operates 13 locations all located in Detroit’s Southwest community.

“This annual event highlights the multi-cultural community we live and serve in everyday. It is important for our children to know, celebrate and embrace the differences within all of us.” – states Debra Spring, Vice President of Education and Director of Vistas Nuevas

FYI • May 26, 2010 • No. 11

FYI • May 26, 2010 • No. 11
The next FYI bulletin will be issued June 11, 2010

HIGHLIGHTS OF THE WEEK

Federation Member Day at the Capitol drew 80+ members
On May 20, over 80 Federation member Executive Directors, Agency Staff, Member Agency Board Members, and Youth spent time with our legislative champions and leaders, and legislators who are expected to rise into new leadership positions following this election year. We were very pleased to have Foster Care Alum Cherish Thomas speak with us about her experiences growing up in the foster care system and her hope that her experiences can help to shape the future experiences of others. Cherish’s perspective helped to remind our group of the reasons we do the work we do. Cherish also served as a role model for the youth present from Starr Commonwealth and Holy Cross Children’s Services, as she has proved youth growing up in the foster care system can have outcomes they may never have dreamed of.

Register now for Sept. 15–17, 2010 Senior Management Conference!
We are in the process of lining up an outstanding group of presenters—each with an expertise and role critical to providing quality services to Michigan's vulnerable children and families. We are very excited about the wealth of information you will gain when you join us at Crystal Mountain!

You will leave the conference even better informed, inspired and invigorated. If you act on this early chance to register, you will insure your seat at the conference at the best possible price. Find the schedule and registration information at http://www.michfed.org; click on “annual conference.”

STATE LEGISLATIVE ACTIVITIES

FYI • May 14, 2010 • No. 10

FYI • May 14, 2010 • No. 10
The next FYI bulletin will be issued May 28, 2010

HIGHLIGHT OF THE WEEK

May 20, 2010 • Federation Member Day at the Capitol
Why it’s so important!
Recent legislative and appropriations hearings further demonstrate the critical need for our membership to be in front of the members of our legislature as the difficult budget negotiations progress. Our membership's presence is NECESSARY at Annual Member Day at the Capitol on Thursday, May 20th! We will be joined by our legislative champions, who still have a lot of work to do on the Human Services budget, and legislators who are expected to rise into new leadership positions following this election year. Join your colleagues on May 20 at Capitol Day by using the following link to register: https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/membercapitolday2010

STATE LEGISLATIVE ACTIVITIES

May 2010 as Foster Care Month in the State of Michigan: HR 274

portraitSpade-057.jpgcb-blue-sky.jpgThank you State Representative Dudley Spade for offering the following resolution! You are a true champion for kids and families in the great State of Michigan!

A resolution to declare May 2010 as Foster Care Month in the State of Michigan

Whereas, National Foster Care Month provides an opportunity to recognize the important role that foster care parents, workers, and advocates have in the lives of children in the foster care system throughout the United States; and

Whereas, There is nothing more precious to our Great Lakes State than the healthy growth and development of our youth, who will determine the future direction of our State; and

Whereas, the state of Michigan, communities and local governments should be encouraged to invest available resources on reunification services and post-permanency supports designed to allow more children in the foster care system to safely return to their biological parents, or find permanent placements through adoption or guardianship; and

FYI • April 30, 2010 • No. 9

FYI • April 30, 2010 • No. 9
The next FYI bulletin will be issued May14, 2010

HIGHLIGHT OF THE WEEK

May 20, 2010
Federation Member Day at the Capitol
Your presence in Lansing on May 20 is important! Join your Federation member colleagues for presentations and discussion with Michigan’s legislative leaders and top DHS Administrators; lunch with legislative leaders in the Capitol; and scheduled legislative visits. Be sure to include your staff and board members as you plan to attend this dynamic day of advocacy!
Sign up online at this link: https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/membercapitolday2010

STATE EXECUTIVE/ADMINISTRATIVE ACTIVITIES

State launches campaign to recruit foster and adoptive parents

State launches campaign to recruit foster and adoptive parents
By Kyla King The Grand Rapids Press April 28, 2010

g0428-tammy-schnydersjpg-e8383cef23657c9f_large.jpgFor anyone thinking of fostering or adopting a child, Tammy Schnyders has a message: It might not always be easy, but it is entirely worth it.

Schnyders, who along with her husband, Steve, has been a foster and adoptive parent to more than 25 children in 14 years said the rewards far outweigh the trials.

"I look at my kids and how far they have come from when we first got them, and that's huge for me," said Schnyders, a West Michigan resident and foster parent for Bethany Christian Services.

"What I keep going back to is if they weren't in a good home they might not succeed in life," she said.

State leaders are hoping to find folks who feel the same way when they kick off a statewide campaign today in Grand Rapids to recruit foster and adoptive parents.

"You don't have to go to China to adopt a child or to be a foster care parent," said Ismael Ahmed, director of the Michigan Human Services Department.

Law Enforcement Leaders Say School Reform Bill Can Help Fight Crime

Prosecutor, police chief back early childhood education, dropout prevention programs

fightcrime.jpgWASHINGTON, D.C. (April 28, 2010) -- Genesee County Prosecutor David Leyton and Mundy Township Police Chief James Petres traveled to Washington, D.C. to meet with Representative Dale Kildee (D-MI) to discuss opportunities to reduce crime through the reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act. Representative Kildee will be a key legislator in the reauthorization of that bill as the chair of the House Subcommittee on Early Childhood, Elementary and Secondary Education.

They said that providing at-risk kids with early education, keeping school-age kids on track to graduation, and reducing bullying, school violence and drug abuse would all have a positive effect on preventing later crime.

“I’d much rather focus our time, energy and taxpayer dollars on effective school reforms than pay room and board for career criminals,” Prosecutor Leyton said. “Public safety pays the toll when kids drop out of school and turn to crime rather than a career or higher education. We need to make sure kids get the right start to their education and stay on track through their school years.”

Research compiled by the anti-crime group Fight Crime: Invest in Kids also shows that a one-year increase of staying in school reduces murder and assault by almost 30 percent, motor vehicle theft by 20 percent, arson by 13 percent and burglary and larceny by about 6 percent. A study funded by the Gates Foundation found that high school dropouts are eight times more likely to be incarcerated than graduates.

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