When family systems break down or a crisis occurs, we’re here to help. We work tirelessly to make sure every child is cared for in a safe and secure home—whether they need short-term care while a family is in transition or a permanent place to call their own.
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Treatment Foster Care
For children and youth (ages 0-21) that have a mental health diagnosis involving severe emotional and behavioral problems, we provide safe, specially equipped foster homes that have the skills and resources to meet their complex needs. Our Treatment Foster Care families are trained and certified in medication management, crisis intervention, and trauma-informed care, and they’re focused on helping foster youth build healthy relationships and develop valuable life skills. Nexus-PATH case workers support these families by providing treatment consultation and behavioral management support. In addition, we use a full team approach to help address the ongoing impact of any functional disabilities and/or past trauma. Our treatment foster families collaborate closely with a Nexus-PATH case worker, the child’s custodian, and other service providers to ensure the best care for each individual child.
Regular Foster Care
We help ensure that youth who are in the child welfare system (from birth through age 21) have their physical, emotional, and social needs met on a daily basis in a family setting—until they’re reunited with their own family or another permanent option is arranged. Our Regular Foster Care families are paired with a Nexus-PATH social worker who knows the family well and understands how they can best help children in their home. These families provide a lower level of care than our Treatment Foster Care homes. Youth in Regular Foster Care do not need to have a mental health diagnosis in order to receive services through Nexus-PATH.
Intensive Treatment Foster Care
For youth who struggle with higher levels of aggressive, sexually problematic, and/or autism spectrum behaviors, we provide dedicated care with trained, experienced foster parents. These foster parents have only one youth per home and are able to provide the individualized care the child needs to be successful. In each of our Intensive Treatment Foster Care homes, one parent is a stay-at-home parent and is available to participate in all appointments and meetings for the child. Youth in these homes are also assigned a Behavioral Skills Worker as an extension of their therapist.
Transition and Assessment Bed Program
For youth transitioning out of psychiatric residential care, group care, or hospitalization–and other youth with the most complex behavioral health issues—Nexus-PATH has developed an innovative program called TAP. Youth in this assessment program stay with foster parents who’ve been specially trained to identify specific behaviors and needs and who can help guide our team as we plan the best course of care for each child.
Specialized Family Care
The period of time when a young person is transitioning out of care at the Youth Correctional Center (YCC) is critically important. To help ensure success for these youth, we match them with foster families who can support them with the adjustments and transition while they work toward living in their permanent home. Our Specialized Family Care program thoughtfully balances and integrates the activities a youth is familiar with—such as school, community activities, and continued treatment—with the more unstructured, permanent realities of home. This program allows each youth to progress at their own pace and settle into a more integrated lifestyle, as they are ready.
Independent Living Services
Nationally, youth who exit foster care are 47% more likely to experience homelessness than their peers, and 25% of these young people will be incarcerated within two years of exiting care. Our Independent Living Program challenges these statistics by preparing youth to leave foster care with the resources and skills they’ll need to live successfully as adults. Our Independent Living Coordinators work with youth who are preparing to exit North Dakota’s foster care system to help them find employment, housing, and/or education, including earning or finding housing deposits, shopping for furniture and necessities, and other tasks required to set up for success. We help these youth learn how to manage their money, navigate or find transportation, and build healthy interdependent skills. For many youth, our coordinators are their only tie to a trustworthy, mature, stable adult. This relationship serves a much greater purpose than simply securing the necessities of independent living—it’s a safety net for those who don’t have one and a springboard toward success in adulthood.
Through our program called Adults Adopting Special Kids (AASK), we provide adoption services to youth from foster care, in partnership with Catholic Charities North Dakota. Our AASK program recruits adoptive parents, helps families and children prepare for adoption, and supports them with the transition. Learn more about AASK.