AmeriCorps Partnering to Protect Children
The AmeriCorps Partnering to Protect Children (APPC) program has been serving Iowa communities for nearly half of a decade. Administered through Iowa State University’s Child Welfare Research & Training Project, APPC members serve at a variety of host sites located across the state. Our members work to implement the four key strategies of Community Partnerships for Protecting Children (CPPC):
- Shared Decision-Making: provide leadership for collaborative efforts that promote community responsibility for the safety and wellbeing of children.
- Community and Neighborhood Networking: promote cooperation and form alliances to provide more accessible and relevant information and professional supports, services, and resources for families whose children are at risk of abuse and/or neglect.
- Individualized Course of Action: Genuinely engage families and youth to identify strengths, resources, and supports to reduce barriers and help families succeed.
- Policy and Practice Change: improve policies and practices to reduce barriers and increase accessibility and relevance of services that lead to positive family outcomes.
APPC members will be primarily responsible for strengthening their sites in relation to three priority areas: building community capacity; delivering information to service providers; and providing outreach and supports to parents/caregivers in a coordinated manner. APPC can achieve this, in part, by placing AmeriCorps members with CPPC sites throughout the state of Iowa in under-served, rural and urban, high-poverty areas. Members assist their site in implementing an intervention based on the CPPC theory of change.
The following stakeholders play an important role in supporting a high-quality AmeriCorps program as funding streams, visionaries, and resource providers:
- The Iowa Commission on Volunteer Service (ICVS) promotes volunteerism and community service throughout the state of Iowa. ICVS is the state-level partner of Iowa AmeriCorps programs.
- Child Welfare Research & Training Project (CWRTP) facilitates and evaluates trainings for IDHS staff and community provider agencies, as well as the services delivered by these agencies. The CWRTP helps to ensure that services and care are informed by best practices that lead to safety and overall wellbeing for children and families.
- Iowa Department of Human Services (IDHS) helps individuals and families achieve safe, stable, self-sufficient, and healthy lives, thereby contributing to the economic growth of the state. IDHS tries to accomplish this by maintaining a client-focused approach, while maximizing the use of federal funding and leveraging opportunities, and by collaborating with public and private partners to achieve results.
- Communities Partnering to Protect Children (CPPC) and CPPC partner-sites throughout the state of Iowa work to assist local efforts to build community-capacity through awareness and collaboration. The program’s goal is to expand and improve local family supports through enhanced community engagement in abuse prevention efforts.
Here are the host sites for the 2017-2018 Program Year!
HAWC Partnerships for Children CPPC with Helping Services for Northeast Iowa – Postville, IA Since 1973, Helping Services for Northeast Iowa has been providing children, teens, and adults with the skills and knowledge to bring about positive change in their own lives and in their communities. Staff and volunteers work to end domestic violence and child abuse; build healthy families, friendships, and relationships; and empower people to stop the future misuse and illegal use of alcohol, tobacco, and other drugs. Our teams—Domestic Abuse Advocacy, Family Education and Support, Substance Abuse Prevention, and Youth Mentoring—provide presentations, research-based programs, trainings, and advocacy to families, businesses, and communities.
Atlas of Winnebago – Woodbury County. The AmeriCorps Partnership for Protecting Children program for our area is centered in the ATLAS office in Winnebago, on the Winnebago Indian reservation in Nebraska. Because many individuals and families travel back and forth between Winnebago and Sioux City, Iowa, it makes sense that the program reaches out to the entire area, including Sioux City. ATLAS of Winnebago works closely with local Tribal programs and the Four Directions Community Center in Sioux City, Iowa to try to meet these needs. ATLAS also sends a representative to the CINCF (Community Initiative for Native Children and Families), in Sioux City. The Motherhood is Sacred (MIS) and Fatherhood is Sacred (FIS) curricula, developed by Al Pooley from Phoenix, AZ., have been well accepted and successful in Indian Country, and are already being used to strengthen relationships between parents and children. Our AmeriCorps member will assist with recruitment for these groups. ATLAS also has a food pantry and a bread give-away program.
Johnson County CPPC – Iowa City, IA
Jones County CPPC – Anamosa, IA
Black Hawk County CPPC (Church Row Hub, Center for Attention Resource Hub) – Waterloo, IA
ArtForceIowa – Des Moines, IA
APPC/DHS Domestic Violence – co-located between Ames and Des Moines, IA
For more information, please contact Erika Abusharkh, APPC Program Director, at firstname.lastname@example.org or 515-294-7340.