September officially recognizes the Child Welfare Workforce, but just like the work you do, our gratitude does not fit into a single time or space. You provide critical services to individuals, families, and communities – work that deserves year-round celebrations and recognition. But I do want to take the opportunity to acknowledge the impact you’ve had.
Through COVID, you have continued to listen with compassion. Your dedication and devotion to the work is a special skill and a calling. Not everyone can do what you do – sometimes conversations with our partner families are hard – their circumstances can often be confusing and cause anger and hurt. But you do everything you can to bring clarity and provide answers. You show up again and again, even when their pain or fear is misdirected at you. You stand in the gap to secure a solution with them that will keep children and families thriving.
Some of you walk alongside people through their toughest moments, while some of you show up to help them prepare to safely usher in a new member to the family.
This recognition month is also an opportunity to remind you to take care of yourselves. Take a little time for yourself and sign up for some chair yoga — a wonderful way to take a breath so you can continue to be strong and focused on the big, and often very complex, work that you do. The National Child Welfare Workforce Institute’s Facebook pages are full of engaging videos with workforce well-being best practices, remote coaching tips and more. I also recommend this pocket card, “Caring for Yourself” from Professional Quality of Life. Though created during the height of the pandemic, this quick reference can be used anytime as a reminder to be good to yourself.
Again, thank you for all that you do!
Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer