MADISON — Gov. Tony Evers, together with Wisconsin Department of Children and Families (DCF) Secretary Emilie Amundson, today announced the state will invest $7.5 million to enhance programming for children and youth with complex needs.
“We want to make sure our kids who have specialized needs have the additional care and support they need, and that they can get those critical services closer to home and closer to their support networks,” said Gov. Evers. “I am confident that through collaboration and commitment to doing what’s best for our kids, DCF and its partners will be able to develop a strong network of programming that will help ensure essential services are made even more accessible to kids and caregivers throughout the state.”
The need for more holistic, specialized care, specifically within specialty home and group care settings, has increased over the last decade. Gov. Evers’ investment will assist DCF, along with key stakeholders, in implementing a multi-pronged approach to serve more children and youth with complex needs in-state and reduce the likelihood of them having to receive specialized care out of state and away from their communities and support networks. The programming, funded through the American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA), will focus on enhancing care and outcomes for Wisconsin’s most vulnerable children and youth.
“While our goal is to keep children within their home, we know that sometimes other supportive
services are needed,” said DCF Secretary Amundson. “When this occurs, keeping children and youth connected to their family and community, while receiving specialized care that meets their needs, is key to their success. DCF and our child welfare community appreciate the governor’s investment and commitment to keep Wisconsin children and youth within their communities.”
Over the coming weeks, DCF will work with partners to assist in the design and implementation of additional supports in group care settings, community-based supports for children in treatment foster care settings, and the development of a statewide electronic referral system for group care providers. Interested parties are encouraged to monitor the state’s eSupplier website for the solicitation announcement.
An online version of this release is available here.