Improving Outcomes for Youth in Transition
Youth aging out of foster care face many hurdles to economic, social, and emotional well-being, say these authors. For the past three years, the University of Iowa School of Social Work and the Iowa Department of Human Services have been collaborating on a federally funded grant to improve outcomes for youth in transition from foster care to adulthood through training of public child welfare supervisors, workers, and community partners. The project was based on the key assumption that supervision is a specific area of practice with its own skill sets. Therefore, the supervisor training included both content in the core principles of transition planning, as well as the skills for supervising caseworkers in the work of transition planning. The project was conceptualized as a multi-level training, beginning with building knowledge and skills for supervisors, then moving to the next step of training caseworkers with supervisors as co-facilitators, and concluding with a series of regional events based on local needs. In this article, the authors describe the process of developing, implementing, and evaluating this statewide training effort.