Awards & Distinctions
Accomplishments in the Past Year
In our 2012 fiscal year, we safely reunited 262 children with their own families from our New York City foster care program, while 60 children were adopted into loving homes. Through our preventive services, 98% of families were strengthened and avoided foster care. We had 34 young adults graduate from high school or earn a GED, while 70 matriculated or remained enrolled in college. Simply put, our kids are being better nurtured while in our care and we’re helping the caring adults in their lives ready themselves to provide that same nurture forever. Here are a few more of the things we are proud of at Graham Windham.
Recent Awards and Distinctions
Graham Windham’s self-evaluation practices highlighted as a leading example of excellent performance measurement and accountability practices by the Bridgespan Group, a well-known non-profit consulting group; April 2012
Katie Stoehr, Vice President for Family Permanency Planning Support (FPPS) and Robin Harper, case planner in the FPPS Bronx Family Foster Care program, received New York City Child Welfare Fund/COFCCA Best Practice Award, March 2012
President Jess Dannhauser appointed to the Commissioner’s Advisory Board and Child Welfare Workforce Committee; Youth Advocate, Kevin McKee, also appointed to the Commissioner’s Advisory Board; January 2012
Graham Windham’s Youth Financial Empowerment program highlighted in NYC Administration for Children’s Services’ What’s Working Bulletin, Summer 2010
Graham Windham awarded the Year Up 2009 Community Ambassador Award to Graham Windham
Graham Windham awarded NYNP Jan 2008 Agency Of The Month by New York Nonprofit Press
Poul Jensen, President & CEO awarded 2007 Child Advocate of the Year
Outstanding Awards in 2007, 2006 and 2005 from the Administration for Children’s Services (ACS)
Graham Windham is accredited by The Commission on Secondary Schools of the Middle States Association (CSS-MSA), The Council on Accreditation (COA), and The National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC).
Helping Our Families to Be the Solution
In February 2011, we began the implementation of Solution-Based Casework, an evidence-based model for working with children and families that has proven effective in other states. In training, coaching and supporting our staff to use Solution-Based Casework with all of the families we work with, Graham Windham became the first agency in New York City to implement a proven practice model across all of its child welfare programs.
Supporting Our Foster Parents
We improved our support to foster parents through the development and implementation of a new foster parent training curriculum and a new normative culture around training and learning for our foster parents. We also started a Foster Parent Council Workgroup.
Building Youth Leaders
We started a youth leadership group for youth in foster care called The Bengals in NYC, which provides leadership training and encourages youth to serve as positive role models for other youth in foster care. The program is modeled off of our existing Bengals program at The Graham School, which has helped to create a positive culture on the campus for years.
In 2012, we launched a new program called SLAM (Support, Lead, Achieve, and Model) Justice Scholars, funded by a contract from the New York City Department of Probation that will promote educational gains for youth in the child welfare system who have been court-involved. SLAM Justice Scholars will provide educational services, positive peer support, life skills workshops and case management to 40 Brooklyn youth. The contract award is part of Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg’s new Young Men’s Initiative (YMI), a $127 million investment that was announced in August to tackle the broad disparities slowing the advancement of black and Latino young men.
At the Campus
Halfway through the 2011-2012 year at The Graham School:
5 students in our culinary training program passed their final exam and received ServSafe Certifications issued by the National Restaurant Association
3 service dogs that were trained by our students in the ECAD (Educated Canines Assisting with Disabilities) program graduated from their training, and are now assisting people with disabilities
90 students were inducted into the Bengals, a group of student leaders who work to create a positive culture on campus and encourage their peers to be leaders. Through their community service activities, the Bengals have raised almost $1500 this year for ECAD, the American Heart Association, Glaucoma Research and the New York AIDS Walk.