June is Reunification Month
National Reunification Month is celebrated in June of each year to recognize the people and efforts around the country that help families stay together. It is also a time to celebrate the families who have overcome obstacles to providing a safe and loving home for their children and are able to reunify after their child was placed in the child welfare system. In 2022, as National CASA/GAL continues to celebrate 40 years of impact, there is a focus on supporting families with community resources to reduce the number of interactions with the child welfare system.
In 2020, 42% of CASA/GAL case closures were the result of reunification with parents or primary caretakers or children and youth remaining with parents throughout the life of the case. Additionally, National CASA/GAL’s second guiding principle for its member network of 950 state organizations and local programs focuses on and recognizes the importance of family preservation and/or reunification. The 2020 National CASA/GAL Standards for Local Programs states:
— It is in a child’s best interests to remain with their family of origin when safely possible;
— The program acknowledges that children experience trauma when separated from their family of origin; and
— If a child is removed from their family of origin, it is in the child’s best interests to be reunified with their family of origin as soon as safely possible.
For more information about how Alaska CASA volunteers advocate for children’s best interests to achieve permanency, contact us at any time at AlaskaCASA@alaska.gov