2020 Caregiver Survey Report

Apr 2021 |
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Online Library

Between November 2019 and September 2020, DSHS surveyed 1,346 caregivers (591 foster and 755 kinship) who had a child in care within six months of the sampling date (August and November, 2019; February and May, 2020). These caregivers were asked about their satisfaction with support, licensing, training, and information provided by the Department of Children, Youth, and Families (DCYF) and private agencies contracted by the Department. They were also asked to offer recommendations for change. The COVID-19 pandemic began five months into the 10-month survey fielding period, but overall perceptions of support remained stable compared to the prior survey. Among foster caregivers, there was a statistically significant decrease in positive responses since 2019 for social worker listening. Foster caregivers were more likely than kinship caregivers to say they had adequate support, could get help when they asked for it, and to find Licensing Division staff knowledgeable. Kinship caregivers, who typically know the children before placement, were more likely to say they had adequate information on the needs of the children. Responses to questions about licensing staff show high levels of satisfaction among caregivers who have interacted with the Division of Licensed Resources. Written comments show that there are still some areas where many desire improvement, including information sharing, inclusiveness, reimbursements, and efficient processes. Many caregivers requested the continuation of online training, with updated content and more opportunity for interaction. Caregivers continue to emphasize that participation of experienced caregivers adds value to training.

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