- Children five and under comprise 39% of Miami-Dade’s foster care system, making it the largest age group
- Both locally and nationally, these children comprise the largest percentage of maltreated children; 45% of the million substantiated cases of child abuse every year in the US are children are under five
- Statistically they are at the highest risk of abuse, and resulting death, and they remain in foster care the longest
- When abuse and neglect occurs with children so young its negative impact affect several areas – their physical, cognitive, social and emotional development – and the consequences of maltreatment continue into later development
- The social and emotional effects are very profound, including increases in aggression, depression and other deviant social behaviors
In response to the issues facing infants and toddlers in foster care, FFCR started an initiative to tailor our services for this population. Modeled after FFCR’s Specialized Independent Living Review Program, the Zero to Five Initiative includes training designated Zero to Five panels on issues that target this population, asking specific Zero to Five questions at the review hearings and increasing foster parent participation at review hearings.
One of FFCR’s goals with this project was to be able to gather data on Miami-Dade’s Zero to Five infants and toddlers in foster care that identifies systemic issues that need improvement. Our 2011 Newsletter and Zero to Five Data Report shed light and offered recommendations. Lastly, FFCR conducted a training symposium, “Co-Parenting, Moving from Best Practice to Shaping Policy.”
This project was supported through funds from The Children’s Trust.
For more information, please check out the following resources: