Los Angeles Adoption and Foster Care Agency Earns “All Children – All Families” Seal of Recognition
February 29, 2012 by Paul Guequierre
Yesterday the HRC Foundation Family Projected presented the All Children – All Families seal of recognition to the Village Family Services in Los Angeles during the agency’s Cultural Competency Series workshop Working With LGBTQ Youth: What You Really Need to Know. The family wellness agency earned the honor by meeting the required criteria for fully inclusive policies and practices in working with the LGBT community. The Human Rights Campaign’s All Children—All Families initiative provides a comprehensive framework for agencies to establish policies and practices that welcome, support and affirm LGBT foster and adoptive parents.
At the ceremony, Hugo Villa, CEO of The Village Family Services said, “We’re honored to be recognized as a leader serving LGBTQ youth and families. From the start, we’ve envisioned a different kind of agency – one that unites expertise with compassion and cultural competence to focus on the unique needs of children, youth and families whom we feel are being inadequately served. LGBTQ youth need affirming and supportive services and they can count on The Village Family Services to be there for them.”
In an article published in Frontiers, child welfare expert Richard Valenza, Executive Director of RAISE A CHILD, spoke of the importance of HRC’s work in adoption and foster care, saying: “As far as cultural competence to work with our community, HRC’s All Children – All Families seal is the gold standard.”
The “All Children – All Families” initiative, launched in 2007, promotes policies and practices that welcome LGBT foster and adoptive parents. The program seeks to enhance LGBT cultural competence among child welfare professionals and educate LGBT people about opportunities to become foster or adoptive parents to waiting children. To date, ACAF has over 50 participating agencies across the country, and has awarded 18 seals of recognition. Last year HRC launched a “50 state strategy,” with the goal of securing at least one ACAF-recognized adoption agency dedicated to working with LGBT families in every state.
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