In May 2015, the Davidson region held a large community stakeholder meeting to discuss how well communities in the county are able to provide the services needed for vulnerable families and children. In this meeting, participants from numerous parts of the child welfare system provided feedback on the quality, quantity, etc. of the current services available in the area.
Information collected from community members help guide decisions about the future work of In Home Tennessee in Davidson County. The regional leadership group (comprised of both DCS and community partners) review the feedback and related data from the meeting to decide on which (new) areas to create workgroups for quality improvement and potential creation of new resources for families.
The region is currently working on the priorities of Parenting Education, Absent Parent Involvement, and most recently, Domestic Violence Services.
The Parenting Education workgroup or “Parents Forward” is led by two partnering local agencies—The Family Center and Youth Villages. Parents Forward has made great strides over the years with bridging the service gaps in particular zip codes and continues to map out regional parenting needs based on primary child removal reasons and Child Protective Services referral data, provided by the Department. This information is used to ensure those areas deemed at highest risk can be targeted for parenting classes as a first priority. “Parents Forward” has a Facebook page for parents and child welfare workers to stay in touch: www.facebook.com/MTNParentsForward
In 2014, the work of this group was recognized by the nationally-known Casey Families organization and was highlighted in the Casey Families annual report: “A Declaration of Hope.” Check it out: http://www.casey.org/media/2014_SignatureReport.pdf
The Absent Parent workgroup is in the process of revamping and is now newly led by a local attorney and the Department. This group is focusing on ensuring that fathers are well-received by the child welfare system. The group is also working to begin collecting data on father involvement in Davidson County and in forging a partnership with the Department of Health.
The Domestic Violence workgroup is the newest priority that was added in late 2014. The group is in the process of creating goals, recruiting members, collecting data, and partnering with Nashville Metro Police.
The Davidson region began the In Home Tennessee enhancement in September 2010 by holding a large community stakeholder meeting where approximately 125 individuals from the local child welfare system participated in an open, documented discussion around the ability of the community to provide for the needs of the region’s most vulnerable families and children.
A follow up community stakeholder meeting was held in February 2011 where a summary of the findings assessment discussions were presented. Areas to be addressed first were shared including parenting education and absent parent involvement—progress on both areas is detailed above. Data supported the need for these identified priorities.
Contact the Regional Project Lead, Ami Parker at Ami.Parker@tn.gov to get involved with In Home Tennessee in Davidson.
Last updated: May 2015