In spring 2013, the Offices of Early Childhood and Children, Youth, and Families received funding for the development of Community-based Child Abuse Prevention Services, or the Colorado Community Response (CCR) program. As part of a group of cornerstone prevention programs formed or expanded under the state’s Child Welfare Plan 2.0, CCR targets families who have been referred to the child welfare system for alleged child abuse and neglect, but whose case has been “screened out”.
In Colorado, approximately 55% of child welfare referrals are “screened out” following a maltreatment report. These families are generally deflected from child welfare without receiving further outreach or support; yet research shows that while a safety risk may not be currently present, “screened out” families are still at high risk for re-referral to the child welfare system and future incidences of child maltreatment. CCR is designed to increase the availability of community support for these families, thereby preventing child maltreatment while promoting individual, family, and community strengths, building parenting skills, and providing access to vital economic, health, and other services. By engaging families in proactively alleviating stressors or other factors that could jeopardize child safety, CCR fills a significant gap in the child maltreatment prevention continuum.
Vision: A powerful partnership with vulnerable families to proactively increase protective capacities and improve child safety in Colorado.
Mission: To provide a comprehensive, community-based service continuum for families at-risk for child maltreatment through a combination of case management, service linkages, and community supports.
To enhance comprehensive, voluntary services for families reported to child welfare, but screened out or closed after initial assessment.
To increase families’ protective capacities by promoting individual, family, & community strengths.
To address the link between poverty and maltreatment by connecting families to vital economic and other services.
To reduce re-referrals to child welfare related to escalation of risks.
To prevent high financial costs associated with being “screened in” to the child welfare system.
Components of a Community Response Program:
While CCR workers will tailor their services to meet the needs of individual families, components of a successful Community Response program include:
Collaborative goal-setting and family engagement
Direct services and resource referrals (both economic and non-economic)
Financial decision-making assistance and coaching
Flexible spending funds
Community Response in Colorado:
The Colorado Legislature approved a Budget Amendment to establish six community-response sites in year one; 12 pilot sites in year two, and 18 pilot sites in year three. By adopting Community Response, Colorado becomes one of 15 states with a “formalized response” to “screened-out” reports.
The Office of Early Childhood announced the initial ten (10) sites, awarded over $730,000 to pilot Colorado Communtity Response program:
Arapahoe County, in partnership with Douglas County and Tri-County Health Department, serving Arapahoe and Douglas counties;
Boulder County, in partnership with Sister Carmen Community Center and City of Longmont Children Youth and Services;
Eagle County, in partnership with Eagle County School District;
Larimer County, in partnership with The Matthews House;
Mesa County, in partnership with Hilltop Community Resources;
Montrose County, in partnership with Hilltop Community Resources;
Otero County, in partnership with Tri-County Family Care Center, serving Otero, Bent and Crowley counties;
Teller County, in partnership with Community Partnership Family Resource Center;
Washington County, in partnership with Rural Communities Resource Center, serving Washington and Yuma counties.
To view a map of the Colorado Community Response service areas across the state, click Here.
Colorado Community Response Expansion
Announced January 9, 2014, the Office of Early Childhood released an Expansion Request for Applications in effort to fund an additional two (2) sites to reach the intended twelve sites for year two. The Application period closed on February 3, 2014. It is anticipated that the awarded additional sites will be announced mid March.
Supplemental information regarding Expansion Request For Application
To view the Colorado Community Response Expansion Question and Answer document posted 01/31/14, click Here.
To view the Colorado Community Response Question and Answer document posted 10/04/13, click Here.
To view the Colorado Community Response Implementation Presentation click Here.
Additional Information on Colorado Community Response
Contact: Teri Haymond, LCSW
Colorado Community Response Project Manager