All Children - All Families: Leader Testimonials

Child welfare agencies across the U.S. are improving their practice with LGBTQ youth and families through All Children - All Families resources and training. The testimonials below come from leaders at these agencies and capture the many benefits of participating in All Children - All Families.

Aviva Family and Children's Services, Los Angeles, CA

"Aviva is honored to be recognized as a leader in serving LGBTQ youth and families, especially given the disproportionate number of foster youth in Los Angeles County– approximately one in five– who identify as LGBTQ. This acknowledgement is a testament to the humanity and dedication of our staff and complements our mission and belief that every child and every family in our Los Angeles community deserve a chance for a brighter future.”

-- Regina Bette, President and Chief Executive Officer

Children’s Home + Aid, Chicago, IL

“Vulnerable children, whatever their age, whatever their circumstances, need someone they can count on. Sometimes that means finding them a new loving home. For us to do that effectively, we must be welcoming of all prospective parents. Working with All Children – All Families, we were able to find areas where we needed to make some improvements and provide excellent training to our entire Foster Care and Adoption services staff. The whole process has made our agency more effective at attracting LGBT parents which means we are doing a better job protecting the children we serve.”

-- Nancy Ronquillo, President and Chief Executive Officer

Devereux Arizona, Maricopa, Pima, and Cochise Counties, AZ

“It is an honor to be recognized by an organization of such caliber as the Human Rights Campaign. For years we have focused on providing the highest quality of services to children and families throughout Arizona. Inherent to this focus is the recruitment and retention of an array of foster care providers, to include qualified applicants from the LGBT community. It is our goal to help all children in need, so it is nice to be recognized as a leader in serving diverse groups.”

-- Lane Barker, Executive Director

EMQ Families First, Campbell, CA

“We chose to work with HRC to ensure we are doing our part to actively welcome, affirm and support LGBT parents and families. We value what LGBT families have to offer our waiting children and want to see more LGBT foster and adoptive parents. The seal itself is a symbol of our efforts and hopefully a visible sign to LGBT families of our commitment.”

-- Roberto Favela, MSW, LCSW, Vice President of Foster Care & Adoption Services

Forever Families Through Adoption Inc., Rye Brook, NY

“FFTA is truly proud and pleased to continue to place children with LGBT families and to always focus on the best interests of children in need of their forever family. As we celebrate the awarding of the All Children - All Families Seal of Recognition we are not only supporting the LGBT community, but are standing up for ethical practice by removing barriers to LGBT adults who dream of becoming parents and to children in need of a safe, permanent and loving family.”

-- Joy S. Goldstein, LCSW, ACSW, FFTA, Executive Director

Hands Across the Water, Ann Arbor, MI

“By earning this seal I am more confident than ever that we are prepared to assist LGBT clients build their families and meet their needs as parents, as well as expand the pool of parents for the children who need them. And that is our ultimate goal.”

-- Kathleen Nelson, LMSW, ACSW, Director

Jewish Family and Children Services, Philadelphia, PA

"As an organization we are committed to ensuring all LGBTQ individuals and families receive only the best care possible. From young children, to adults and the elderly community, JFCS has examined and transformed our agency with an eye toward LGBTQ inclusion. We are especially proud of this recognition from the Human Rights Campaign Foundation. This is testament to the humanity and dedication of our staff, and reflects our agency’s vision — uniting expertise with compassion and cultural competency to achieve the goal of creating loving, affirming and supportive families for the LGBTQ youth and families we serve."

-- Paula Goldstein, President and Chief Executive Officer

Los Angeles County Department of Children & Family Services, Pasadena, CA

“By engaging with HRC on this important work, L.A. County can ensure that we are actively welcoming and supporting LGBT adoptive parents from diverse communities, from our first contacts with prospective parents through the process of placing children and helping their families stay strong.”

-- Diane Wagner, Chief of L.A County’s Adoption and Permanency Resources Division

Midwest Foster Care and Adoption Association, Independence, MO

“The LGBT community has been overlooked by foster care and adoption agencies for too long. Being able to experience the joy of raising children is a gift that anyone should have the opportunity to pursue, regardless of sexual orientation or gender identity.  But for LGBT families, that process could be difficult and riddled with pitfalls along the way.  We are delighted that our agency can now provide the support and openness that LGBT prospective parents are looking for when they begin their journey towards foster care and adoption.”

-- Lori Ross, Executive Director

New York Council on Adoptable Children, New York, NY

“It is an honor to receive the seal from the All Children - All Families initiative of the Human Rights Campaign. We look forward to continuing and expanding our work with LGBT families who have proven to be an excellent resource in providing permanent homes for children in our foster care system.”

-- Ernesto Loperena, Executive Director

Penny Lane Centers, North Hills, CA

“We are proud to be expanding our services to the LGBT population, and are committed to supporting and meeting their needs. We are honored to be recognized by the Human Rights Campaign Foundation for providing quality services to LGBT families, and to be receiving the All Children - All Families seal. LGBT families provide a valuable resource for a vulnerable population of children, and we look forward to many years of success in creating permanent healthy and happy adoptive families in which children can grow and thrive.”

-- Ivelise Markovits, Founder and Chief Executive Officer

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