Steve Stricker American Family Insurance Foundation grant helps Coalition for Children, Youth and Families aid foster parents
The PGA Tour Champions American Family Insurance Championship returned in 2022 with no restrictions and raised over $2.2 million for charitable organizations. The Steve Stricker American Family Insurance Foundation continues to make an impact in our communities by helping charitable organizations do their important work. As we lead up to the 2023 event, we highlight one of those organizations.
According to Who Cares, a project by The Imprint that collects data on the foster care system, the number of youths in care is going down, and so is the number of licensed foster homes. Across the nation, the reliance on relatives continues to grow in many systems as the use of group homes and residential care declines. In 2022, there were more than 380,000 youth in the U.S. foster care system, 36% of whom live with relatives, and we can expect to see this number increase. Federal and State laws have signaled the importance of maintaining family connections and cultural traditions in minimizing trauma, but that means there is a greater need for education and resources for these families.
Creating community for foster families
While placing youth with relatives can minimize trauma, foster parents still require help when taking on this responsibility. Becoming a foster parent often means caring for a child or teenager who has experienced trauma and navigating this can be a difficult and lonely experience for foster parents. The Coalition for Children, Youth and Families (CCYF) helps alleviate these challenges.
CCYF is a nonprofit based in Milwaukee, whose purpose is to serve as a caring, expert, neutral resource for families and caregivers touched by foster care, adoption and kinship care. The organization works with Wisconsin families to provide training programs, stories of hope and inspiration through their YouTube channel, conferences and learning events for novice foster parents.
“Having a supportive community for foster families is extremely important,” said Oriana Carey, executive director at CCYF, “Many of them are thrust into this responsibility with little to no experience or support network. Letting them know they are not alone and sharing resources can make a big difference.”
In 2022 there were a total of 7,066 foster youth in Wisconsin, 40 percent of whom live with relatives, four percent higher than the national average. CCYF has already helped many of these families, and with the help of the Steve Stricker American Family Insurance Foundation grant, they hope to grow their platform to provide more training and resources.
“I always say that if we want to have thriving communities, we need to have thriving families,” said Carey. “Families need to feel supported and there's someone there to support them, and we know we're not the only supporter. The importance of this type of funding overall in the nonprofit sector is crucial and critical. So many of us are the silent backbone in the community, filling in service gaps, and it’s great to have programs like this that ensure we can continue to make a positive impact on families in our communities.”
The Coalition’s impact on foster families
- “There is so much negativity all around. But the positivity found through the Coalition brightens our lives. We support the Coalition because strong families and children—given a chance—will enhance our whole world. And, if we make one life better, we have changed the world. We can’t thank you enough for embracing this mission.”
- “We have sought support and inspiration from the Coalition for the past 12 years. When going through the adoption home study process, the Coalition’s library of resources was invaluable to us. Since that time, it has been the stories of other families’ journeys, as well as the online resources that have helped guide and inspire us to carry on even when things are difficult. This organization connects families with shared experiences to one another and to a unique array of online information that can be accessed any time. We are very grateful to all the Coalition has meant to us these past 12 years.”
- “CCYF has meant the world to our family. We have two adopted daughters. One who struggles with attachment issues. They helped us find a therapist and the lending library has been invaluable. I for one, love the accessibility of the online training resources.”
Learn more about the Coalition for Children, Youth and Families and their positive impact through kinship care, community and resources, by visiting their website.
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About Steve Stricker American Family Insurance Foundation
Established in 2013 when Steve Stricker became a brand ambassador for American Family Insurance, the mission of the foundation is to inspire and develop strong families and healthy kids so they can pursue their dreams. The foundation supports organizations that produce tangible outcomes that align with this mission.
About the American Family Insurance Championship
The American Family Insurance Championship was created in 2016 by American Family Insurance, PGA TOUR Champions and PGA player and Wisconsin native Steve Stricker. Since its inception, the championship and associated events have raised nearly $15 million for the American Family Children’s Hospital and other charities. The 2023 championship will be held June 3 -11 at the University Ridge Golf Course in Madison, Wisconsin. For more information: Web: amfamchampionship.com; Twitter: @AmFamChamp; Facebook: American Family Insurance Championship; Instagram: amfamchampionship. #AmFamChamp