Credit hours:

Course Summary

For a young person in foster care, having permanence means stability and reliable, supportive lifelong connections. All youth in foster care need it. Understanding permanency and the Permanency Pact described in this course can give you confidence as you guide youth in your care towards building and strengthening relationships with supportive people in their life.

In this course, you can expect to learn:

  • The importance of permanency for youth in care

  • How young people in foster care think about permanency

  • The different types of permanent relationships and their roles in the lives of youth in care

  • The difference between positive and negative supports

  • Several ways a transitioning youth could benefit from the support of an adult

  • How to brainstorm a list of prospective Permanency Pact adults

  • How to access and create a Permanency Pact

  • The importance of understanding that permanency comes with responsibility from all people involved – including youth

Step 1

Watch the video "What Does Permanency Mean?" developed by Nebraska Children and Families Foundation to better understand what permanency means to foster youth.

Step 2

Meet the Lived Experience Leaders involved in the ACF’s All-In Youth Engagement Team, and learn from their expertise about what they would like to see for permanency in the foster care system.  Then review the All-In Youth Engagement Team’s  Recommendations for Improving Permanency and Well-Being.

Step 3

Review the FosterClub Permanency Pact. The Pact is designed to help foster youth identify supportive adult connections which will continue to provide positive supports through and beyond the transition from care. As a foster parent, you can introduce a young person to this tool and help them identify those continuing supports in an effort to build a strong support network.

Step 4

Watch and read how the Juvenile Law Center in Pennsylvania and its "Youth Fostering Change" program developed a "youth-perspective" toolkit for child welfare professionals that helps youth in care achieve permanency. 

Step 5

Review the following post written about the Permanency Pact by Independent Living Outreach Specialist at Children’s Aid Society Ebone Watkins.

Step 6

Review the article "Legal and Relational Permanence in Older Foster Care Youths" from Social Work Today.

Step 7

Join the discussion in the comments below to answer the following question:

How would you explain permanence to your foster youth?

Step 8

Finished the module? If you are logged in as a subscribed user, take the quiz to earn your Continuing Education Credit hours and certificate!

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Course Discussion

msbeky1101's picture

msbeky1101 said:

I would tell them that I am here for you through the good and the bad. I will listen to you and together we hopefully form a family bond
josephhalsey's picture

josephhalsey said:

I would tell them that I am here to love, help, and support them through life no matter what the situation is. I hope that we develop the kind of relationship where thoughts and feelings are openly and freely shared without fear of judgment and condemnation where we both can work toward the very best resolution.
NicoleJohn Kallberg's picture

NicoleJohn Kallberg said:

A life long connections to a family throughout a lifetime!
Cheferin84's picture

Cheferin84 said:

Permanent is a way for our youth to know that no matter what life throws at them whether good or bad, they will always have someone to back them up and support them.
craigstephens's picture

craigstephens said:

Permanence is a forever relationship that nurtures safety, love, reliability, acceptance, unconditionally always.
Lmcelheny's picture

Lmcelheny said:

Unconditional love and commitment -
km16471's picture

km16471 said:

Permanency means you are my family and I am yours. I am here for you always, to help you navigate life. I love you unconditionally and will be a part of your life forever.
demshickjr's picture

demshickjr said:

You are now a resident in your permanent home.
mldemshick's picture

mldemshick said:

Permanency is the culminating result of stability and a sense of closure, knowing that you are in a supportive forever home.
Joenangel14's picture

Joenangel14 said:

Permanency is a forever relationship