Child and Family Teams (CFT)
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The Child and Family Team, on a practice level, is where the rubber meets the road and system of care is actively implemented to promote positive outcomes for youth and families. The Child and Family Team is built around the family to make sure that each family's strengths are promoted and their needs are met. Team members work together with the family to write an individualized plan based on what the child/youth and family wants and needs, and to also decide on Child and Family Team membership and frequency of meetings.

Youth and Families often need a flexible mixture of formal paid services and informal natural supports to meet their needs across multiple life domains (housing, financing, health, education, legal, etc.) In a system of care, these supports and services are planned, coordinated, delivered, and monitored through Child and Family teams using a Wraparound Planning Process.

One Child, One Family, One Team, One Plan

Child and Family Team Participants

The family is always a part of the Child and Family Team (CFT). Any meeting that is conducted without the family present is not a Child and Family Team Meeting. Children, who are old enough to attend meetings, understand the process and make choices, should also be active participants on their CFT.

"Nothing about us without us"

The team also includes anyone who is important in the family's life and who knows the strengths and needs of the child and family. Team members are usually people who are part of the child's education, care, custody or treatment, and others who know the family and lend support. They can include, but are not limited, to the following:

  • Family members
  • Friends and neighbors
  • Community members
  • Members of businesses, churches or other groups
  • Teachers and other school staff
  • Family advocates
  • Service providers (doctors, social workers, case managers, court counselors, teachers, school nurses, etc.)
  • Others who know the family well

"It takes a village to raise a child"

​Child​​ and Family Teams and Wraparound

Wraparound is how the work gets done in Child and Family Teams using the principles of System of Care. In wraparound, Child and Family Teams gather with the youth and family and ask, "What does this family need to have better lives?"

The wraparound planning process is as simple as people helping people. If the youth and family need something the formal services do not provider, the child and family team helps create a strengths-based plan to support the youth and family in meeting the needs they have identified as important to them. 

Essentially, the wraparound process can be described in Four Phases. The steps within each of the four phases describe what needs to happen in each of the Child and Family Teams. Action is how the work gets done. It is very important that not only action occurs but it is consistent with the principles of System of Care. Although there are four phases in the wraparound planning process, it is not a linear process.   Some of the phases overlap due to the nature of Child and Family Teams: ​

  1. Engagement
  2. Plan Development
  3. Plan Implementation
  4. Transition
Child and Family Teams may struggle within different phases of the wraparound process. Sometimes the Child and Family Team is missing collaboration with Natural Supports in the Engagement Phase, which creates a gap in necessary support. During Plan Development or Implementation, a Child and Family Team may struggle due to a lack of known resources or support. Additionally, the Child and Family Team may not be seeing the outcomes they had hoped for and after several modifications to strategies request a Care Review Team Meeting. Finally, transition planning occurs throughout the wraparound process. The Child and Family Team should always consider who needs to be a part of the team to ensure seamless transitions throughout the youth's life.

An assessment of strengths/needs within all Life Domains occurs throughout the wraparound process. The Care Review Team will focus on supporting the Child and Family Team within this context.