2023 Caregiver Survey Report

Mar 2024 |
Online Library

Between September 2022 and August 2023, DSHS surveyed 1,342 caregivers (495 foster and 854 kinship) who had a child in care within six months of the sampling date (August and November, 2022; February and May, 2023). These caregivers were asked about their satisfaction with support, staff, access and process, information, licensing, and training 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. Satisfaction with support, staff, access and process, information, training, and licensing remained high in 2023, with a majority of caregivers giving positive responses to all structured items. Kinship providers were more positive than foster caregivers on most items. There were also significant changes since 2022: more kinship providers said they were treated like part of the team; more foster caregivers said they found licensing staff knowledgeable; and fewer foster caregivers said they felt personally supported, listened to, included in meetings, and informed. In the written comments, caregivers expressed appreciation for the support from caseworkers; staff access and consistency of contact; available resources; overall quality and helpfulness of DCYF staff and related agencies; and the helpfulness of the training. Caregiver comments also identify some areas that need work, including policies and processes, service coordination, and access to financial resources. Many caregivers also commented that they thought DCYF needed additional staff.

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