Individualized Course of Action
Purpose: Genuinely engage families and youth to identify strengths, resources, and supports to reduce barriers and help families succeed.
Every family has strengths, which may be temporarily overshadowed by challenges they are facing. Individualized course of action, or the Family team approach, seeks to identify and build on those strengths so the family can successfully address issues of concern. This approach is family-centered, strength-based, and focused on engaging families in an authentic way.
The family team meeting process begins by engaging and preparing the family and their support partners. A family team meeting is then convened, bringing together the family with formal and informal supports to develop a tailor-made plan. This family-driven plan is designed to support the family and ensure the safety and well-being of the children in that family. Action plans identify the resources, supports and specific activities to be carried out by parents, friends, extended families, and their support network. These plans adapt to cultural, ethnic and racial norms that vary from family to family.
• Work with the Department of Human Services (DHS) to strengthen and expand the use of quality
Family Team Meetings for families that come to the attention of the child welfare system
• Educate and engage partners
• Promote best practice
• Assist with evaluation
• Identify and recruit informal supports and community resources
• Build capacity to offer community Family Team Meetings that include: agreed upon referral process,
training and support of facilitators, and tracking and quality assurance activities
Individualized Course of Action in Action
A major success of Community Partnerships has been the adoption of the Family Team Meeting process as the preferred method of making decisions in child welfare cases. More recently, Community Partnerships have begun offering community family team meetings as a way to prevent formal child welfare involvement for vulnerable families.