Charlotte was born on a snowy morning in January of 2018. Unfortunately, Charlotte is one of a growing number of babies born with drugs in her system. Because of a number of social issues, the hospital knew Charlotte would not be able to go home safely. Charlotte is not the first or the second, but actually the third daughter born to her mother and neither of her siblings are currently in their mother’s custody. One child is in the custody of their maternal aunt and in the custody of a cousin. Though the households are separate, the family is close and the sisters spend time together often. Kinship care has worked for this family in the past and Charlotte’s 30 Days to Family ® Specialist, Jamie, was determined to make it work again.
Right after Charlotte’s birth her sisters’ custodians, their aunt and cousin, were contacted about possible placement. Due to family circumstances and the care of multiple children, neither was able to take Charlotte into their home. They both were interested in a relationship and sibling connections with this tiny new baby girl though.
This situation became a great opportunity to 30 Days to Family ® Program because the intensive approach results in at least 80 kin connections in 30 days or less. Charlotte needed connections fast. After being discharged from the hospital after a few days, Charlotte entered into foster care. Jamie met with Charlotte’s immediate relatives (mother, father, grandparents, and sibling custodians) within 72 hours of the case being opened. Charlotte’s family tree began to take shape with valuable family connections as Jamie worked to find her a kinship home.
On day 4, Jamie made contact with Megan, a close family friend of Charlotte’s grandmother. Megan is married, lives locally and is very close to Charlotte’s extended family. During a visit to Megan’s home, she and her husband agreed to take placement of Charlotte. Background checks and a safety home inspection were completed quickly and visits between them and Charlotte began. Jamie worked with Megan on Charlotte’s family tree. At first, Megan was reluctant to discuss family connections. Jamie stayed committed to the 30 Days to Family ® Model and continued to talk with Megan and her family about the family tree.
Through multiple conversations, Megan pieced together that through an affair decades prior, Charlotte was actually a blood relative to her! Where a family had not seen a biological connection, Jamie and the family dug and found one. Though a biological connection is not a requirement for kinship placement, Charlotte now has a placement with a biological relative that may have not been discovered had it not been for Jamie’s commitment and her relentless curiosity. On Jamie’s most recent home visit to check in on Charlotte and the family, Megan and Charlotte were cuddling together in the living room. Megan and her husband are committed to giving Charlotte a loving home with kin and connection with her sisters.