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Who is the Grayson County Child Welfare Board?


Who is the Grayson County Welfare Board?

The Grayson County Welfare Board (GCCWB) liaisons with professionals who work in foster care and protection, established itself in 1943. We are a 501(c)(3) organization committed to the protection, care, and support of local foster children.


This blog is an introduction blog to the GCCWB’s plans for a twice-monthly blog beginning now. The GCCWB’s vision is to cultivate a community that reveres and wraps support around foster families so that every child in foster care receives a strong, loving, and capable home where powerful healing can take place.

The GCCWB works with the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services (DFPS) to assist with and ensure the protection and care of the abused and neglected children in Grayson County. Texas has many county child welfare boards under the umbrella of the Texas Council of Child Welfare Boards (TCCWB).

The Texas Council of Child Welfare Boards was established in 1978, much later than the GCCWB. These county welfare boards in Texas cover 74% of Texas’ 254 counties. The TCCWB’s 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization is led by a board of directors representing 11 regional councils and over 190 county child welfare boards. The GCCWB is powered 100% by volunteers.


What Does the Grayson County Child Welfare Board Do?

On the grassroots level, the GCCWB supports part of its mission by paying for and providing clothing allowances, extracurricular activities, Christmas presents, and much, much more for children in Grayson County foster care. The GCCWB Board of Directors are all volunteers.

The GCCWB recruits, educates, and supports foster families who are taking in neglected and abused children, sometimes with little notice. These families are also working on the grassroots level dealing with the everyday needs of traumatized children who have never met the foster care families.

The GCCWB considers itself to be part of the village where neglected and abused children can learn to trust, because they are both part of the village. The GCCWB works diligently in the village of the DFPS and the Grayson County community through collaboration and connection, and can help with adoption. The GCCWB administers the funds donated to the board for the financial support of foster care children and provides support for the staff of Grayson County Child Protective Services.

The TCCWB and the GCCWB make their resources available to the DFPS, foster families, and foster children for every process and challenge that prevents itself when a child is removed from its home. DFPS staff is historically overwhelmed. Their salaries are low, and their plates are full. These professions prove emotionally draining. The main goal, no matter the mountains these different agencies have to climb, is to ensure that foster children mature into compassionate, well-rounded, and capable adults.







How Does a Child End up in Foster Care in Texas?

When children have been abused or neglected or are at risk of abuse or neglect, a judge may decide to put them in foster care to protect them. Special laws apply to Native American children. CPS staff perform the in-home investigations when they receive a child abuse or neglect complaint.

CPS may request a court order to remove children from their homes if it believes parents have been abused or neglected or children are at risk of future abuses or neglect and they need to be removed for their protection. If a judge decides a child needs to be removed, the child may go into foster care.

That process can lead to a litany of legal battles between the parents or guardians of the child and the State of Texas. There are cases where children are removed from its home without a court order, and an emergency hearing is scheduled. The regular legal procedures go on for a year. To begin with, usually CPS asks a judge for a court order before removing a child from a home when there's significant risk of abuse or neglect but the current circumstances are not an emergency in a non-emergency hearings/show cause hearing.

Once a child is removed and goes into foster or kinship care, the process begins with an adversary hearing where the court holds an adversary hearing within 14 days of removal. If the judge does not return a child to its parents, he or she may decide to place the child with a relative or close family friend if they are appropriate, available, and willing to help. Otherwise, the child will stay in foster care.


The adversary hearing is the parent’s chance to present their view of what happened and how the child can be protected in the future. Next comes status hearings in 60 days, permanency court reviews in about five months where CPS reports parent’s progress, and a court resolution in 12 months where the court will either return the child to the parent or give permanent custody to a relative, a close family friend, or to CPS.

On rare occasions, the court may extend the 12-month deadline for up to six more months. The court may terminate parental rights if it has legal grounds to do so and determines that is what is best for the child. So, as you can see, a foster care child could be in one or more homes for up to a year and a half. That’s where the Texas county welfare boards come in.

In Texas, county welfare boards contribute $20-30 million dollars annually to meet children’s needs that cannot be met by the limited state funding of the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services.


What Does The Texas Department of Family and Protective Services Do (DPFS)?

The child welfare system, justice system, education system, and other systems work together to address the issues a foster child faces. Child Protective Services (CPS) operates under the umbrella of the DFPS. The CPS performs as the investigative arm of DFPS.

Child Protective Services responsibilities include providing services to children and families in their own homes, placing children in foster care, providing services to help youth in foster care successfully transition to adulthood, and helping children to get adopted. CPS offers programs and classes to intact families and foster families.

These programs include crisis intervention classes and counseling, Family-Based Safety Services, Family Group Decision Making, and Parenting Classes. When a child comes into state care, the DFPS’s technical term is "substitute care". The most well-known type of substitute care is Foster Care. They also have Extended Foster Care, Kinship Care, Volunteer Care, Permanent Custody, and adoption programs.





Do You Want to Help the Grayson County Child Welfare Board?

You can help the GCCWB in several ways, and even without actually getting involved with the children.


Level 1:

You can send in monthly contributions as small as $5. An automatic payment can be set up with the link below or you can set up an automatic payment through your online banking system. The GCCWB takes business and personal checks and credit and bankcards online.


The GCCWB Volunteer Bank is a network of people who volunteer time and services when a foster family is in need. Services include meal preparation, events, errands, house repairs, needed items, etc. You can sign up on the Serving Texoma website and become a fan of the Grayson County Child Welfare Board. You will receive notifications as needs arise for foster families in Grayson County.


Level 2:

You can adopt a foster family. Foster families are doing the heavy lifting of nurturing, healing, and raising Grayson County children, so the GCCWB is creating a village of support they can tap in to on a regular basis. Our goal is for each foster family to have a system of support from five to six families who provide a needed service on a consistent basis.

The families who adopt foster families will function as an extended family to the foster family, helping them become stronger in their fostering abilities. Some examples of providing this service include providing a weekly meal for the family, running errands for the family, babysitting, helping with home or car maintenance, etc.

Fill out a form to apply here:


Level 3:

Become a foster family. Through education and resources available through GCCWB, foster families are supported during every step of the fostering process. If you are interested in becoming a foster family, please visit here:


Level 4:

Become a business partner. GCCWB is collaborating and working in conjunction with local businesses to create a foster family discount card that will assist foster families in providing the essentials for their foster kids. These local connections will allow us to grow our village of supporters and to offer special pricing for our foster families at restaurants, grocery stores, auto mechanics, clothing stores, salons, and more.


Other Ways to Help the Grayson County Child Welfare Board

Time

The GCCWB works tirelessly at growing public awareness and education through our ongoing community events and volunteer opportunities. Time is a precious commodity, and we appreciate whatever you can give our children. So, please check out our Facebook page for upcoming events and opportunities to donate your time.


Donate In-kind Items to the Rainbow Room

Children come into custody sometimes with just the clothes on their backs, and our foster families are tasked with supplying all of their needs. The Rainbow Room makes that task economically possible thanks to donations from our community.

The rainbow room supplies foster families with everything needed to care for children, from toothbrushes, clothes, toiletries, diapers, formula, and school supplies. Needs are ongoing and updated regularly. Please visit here to donate needed items:

The Grayson County Child Welfare Board welcomes you to our blog. We wanted to give you a good idea of how we work and who we work with as our introductory blog. If you want more information, feel free to browse our website, or call us!


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