The most significant change in the new IOC model is the implementation of a single case manager system in which services are provided by agencies (CUAs) embedded in the communities that they serve. This helps to ensure that local resources are more accessible to children and families as staff develop connections to formal and informal neighborhood networks.
CUAs provide opportunities for all families including those who will never need formal intervention to come together and support each other. We host free events, such as family movie nights, photo days and workshops, every month to help develop relationships among community residents and to strengthen families.
Parent Cafes are a free monthly Strengthening Families event designed to bring diverse members of the community together to discuss challenges faced by all parents, grandparents, and guardians. Participants get to share a meal as well as their own experiences. They meet people within their own community thus reducing the isolation some parents may feel as they face the challenges of parenting. Childcare and other incentives are provided.
Family Team Conferences
Family Team Conferences serve to reinforce that parents need to have a voice in the decision making for their families and that meaningful parental involvement in developing a plan will lead to increased buy-in and follow-through with plan goals. Family members participate in a facilitated meeting that includes a discussion of their strengths, needs and goals. Parents are encouraged to bring relatives or other people from their support network. Older youth are given an opportunity to attend planning meetings and to speak for themselves.
Community Advisory Board
Each CUA has a Community Advisory Board (CAB) to contribute to, support, advise and/or participate in community development strategies that promote child safety and well-being as the community’s responsibility. CAB members reflect the cultural and ethnic composition of the community. The CAB includes representation from various sectors such as education, behavioral health, faith-based, community-based, law enforcement, recreation, health, neighborhood/civic development, adult residents and youth residents.