Sharing the Baton, Not Passing It: Collaboration between Public and Private Child Welfare Agencies to Reunify Families.
Spath, Robin. Werrbach, Gail B. Pine, Barbara A.
Published: December 2008
Journal of Community Practice
Vol. 16, No. 4 , p. 481-507
Taylor and Francis Group
530 Walnut Street Suite 850
Philadelphia, PA 19106
Increasingly, public sector child welfare agencies are contracting with private agencies for the provision of specialized services to clients while maintaining oversight and case management responsibilities. At the same time, funders, both private and public, are demanding that service providers partner and collaborate with one another. In this article, we present results from a study of a unique partnership between two state child welfare agencies and a private child welfare agency aimed at reunifying families whose children have been removed and placed in foster care. Data was obtained from 41 key informants using a questionnaire and a structured interview. Findings support earlier studies of collaboration, and indicate the strengths of this partnership and factors that facilitated and hindered it. The results have implications for agencies that both contract for and provide a range of child welfare services as well as other interagency relationships.(Author abstract)
private agencies; public agencies; interagency collaboration; partnerships; reunification; family services; foster care