Family Reunification & Preservation Services
As part of its focus on permanency for children, youths and families, Diakon operates two specialized programs in Bucks, Delaware and Lehigh counties of Pennsylvania:
- Diakon Family Reunification Program
- Diakon Family Preservation Program
Before mid-2016, the programs were operated by Lutheran Children and Family Service of Eastern Pennsylvania, part of Liberty Lutheran. Earlier in 2016, Liberty—based near Philadelphia—made the difficult decision to end its children- and family-focused services. Diakon was pleased to be able assume operation of the two services, which have a history of providing excellent outcomes for the at-risk families they serve and may provide a model to replicate in other counties.
This intensive service is designed to aid children and youths in out-of-home placements such as foster or residential care for whom the primary plan is reunification with their biological parent or parents.
The program prepares key family members for the reunification by providing assessments, education and training, and various tools to address family and child needs. Concurrently, staff members explore other options should the process not provide the permanent setting the child needs.
This home-based, intensive family-preservation program serves children returning home from foster care, residential or other out-of-home placement with a goal of ensuring success of the reunification.
The program’s goals are to help safeguard the returning child upon re-entry to the family, facilitate the child’s reintegration with his or her biological or legal family, and prevent recidivism—that is, another placement in foster care or other out-of-home care.
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For more information on either of these programs, please email Fayrouz Azer or telephone her at (215) 872-6649.