Families Growing Together (FGT).
Heartland Family Service. Children's Friend and Service.
 13 p.
Published: December 27, 2016
This final report discusses the activities and accomplishments of a federally funded program to prevent infant abandonment by increasing the well-being, improving permanency, and enhancing the safety of drug-exposed infants and young children. Utilizing a community-based treatment setting, Better Together provides intensive outpatient and outpatient substance abuse treatment to Nebraska families impacted by substance abuse. These families are identified and recommended for services by the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services and the Nebraska Families Collaborative as being at-risk for out-of-home placement of their children. The services provided include: intensive outpatient and outpatient substance abuse treatment, mental health treatment, case management, parenting education, peer support, family therapy, housing assistance, infant and child developmental screening and intervention, physical health care coordination and support, and transportation assistance. Families live in a community-based treatment setting for up to two years—with step-down less intensive treatment as they move through the program. Findings from the process and outcome evaluation of the program indicates: overall, clients increased their parenting skills and improved their mental health, two-thirds of children were reunified with their parents at 3 months into the program, and most children were reunified with their parents and were not again reported or removed for abuse during the evaluation period. A cost-benefit analysis found that for every $1 invested in Better Together, there was an immediate return of $1.50 to individuals and the community. Program implications and recommendations are discussed. 15 references.
Nebraska; family preservation; parent education; substance abuse treatment; public housing; residential care institutions; rehabilitation programs; family therapy; DRUG EXPOSED CHILDREN; SUBSTANCE EXPOSED INFANTS; PRENATAL DRUG EXPOSURE; SUBSTANCE ABUSING MOTHERS; community based services; reunification; foster children