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Child Welfare Financing
Child Welfare Services are funded through a variety of federal sources including:
The Foster Care and Adoption Assistance Program (referred to as Title IV-E) is the major source of child welfare funding. To reach more children, expand supportive services, and implement prevention, states often supplement these funds with their own resources and/or the other federal funding sources above. Because of these varied funding sources and restrictions on eligibility, services vary widely across the states. Children and their families often suffer as a result.

How Title IV-E Can Affect Grandfamilies
Title IV-E limits assistance to children whose family income and resources are at or below the eligibility level created in 1996 for “welfare” or Aid to Families with Dependent Children (AFDC). It links a child’s eligibility for foster care payments to a fourteen year old poverty standard without adjustments for inflation. As a result, a significant number of grandfamilies cannot qualify for assistance.

The Impact of the Fostering Connections to Success and Increasing Adoptions Act of 2008
Fortunately, the Fostering Connections to Success and Increasing Adoptions Act of 2008 “delinked” eligibility with the old AFDC standard for adoption assistance, but foster care maintenance payments and the new guardianship assistance payments remain tied to the 1996 eligibility levels. 

Help Child Welfare Financing Better Serve Grandfamilies
Generations United is working with its partners towards a comprehensive reform of the child welfare financing system. Our goal is to make sure that states and agencies serving children have the flexibility and new federal financial investments to implement needed improvements and expand services. This comprehensive reform must include “delinking” children’s Title IV-E eligibility from the 1996 levels.

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