Last year there were over 9,000 children in foster care in Tennessee. Many of these children spend years in the foster care system, enduring numerous placements. The majority face significant challenges as a result of experiencing traumatic abuse and neglect, including attachment disorder and post traumatic stress disorder.
While these youth are sometimes difficult to place due to their emotional and behavioral needs, length of time in custody, and history of multiple home or residential placements, if they leave care without family support, the results can be catastrophic for them and for the community at large. Tennessee is among 10 states with the highest percentage of youth aging out of foster care without support.
Through federal grants and state contracts, Harmony has developed a network of statewide programs designed to provide the help and support these children and their adoptive families need to be successful. From finding families for at-risk children to supporting adoptive and guardianship families and providing training and advocacy, Harmony’s programs are intended to support the many forms of permanency and its wide-reaching benefits for children, families, and the community.
Two Harmony programs – Finding Our Children Unconditional Support (FOCUS) and Adoption Support and Preservation (ASAP) have been awarded the Adoption Excellence Award from the Children’s Bureau, Administration of Children and Families, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.