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Youth Advocacy

Youth Advocacy Alert

As we told you, Raise the Age for 16-year-olds was included in the budget but still needs to be part of a technical budget implementer bill to become law.

Opponents of the reform are planning a barrage of phone calls and paid advertisements to keep Connecticut youth in the adult system, where they are not safe and don’t receive the services they need.

Please let your legislator know that the special interests don’t speak for you. You can do this in a few seconds by sending your own version of the draft email we’ve prepared. This may be the most important Raise the Age appeal we’ve sent out yet! Thanks so much for your continued support.

To find your legislator, please visit:


Sample Email Text:

Dear Legislator:

I was thrilled that Raise the Age for 16-year-olds was included in the state budget. Please support this critical reform during the budget implementer process. As you know, 47 other states treat 16-year-olds as juveniles in the interest of lowering recidivism and keeping them safe. Connecticut can and should do the same. This legislation was carefully developed with input from all stakeholders. Police will have the latitude they need to do their jobs. No town will need to modify its facilities. The only impact Raise the Age will have on our communities is a long-term reduction in crime.

Thank you,

Your Name
Your Town

Bells of Hope

Each November Churches and religious institutions all over Connecticut will ring their bells for foster children waiting for a permanent home. Join the candlelight vigil in your community to support children waiting for an adoptive family.

Deb Kelleher has provided us with her founder’s story and shared the following materials with us. You can use these materials for promoting the Bells of Hope project in your congregation or neighborhood.

The Bells of Hope Story

Proposal for National Adoption Month

For more information, please also visit the Bells of Hope information site.

Bells of Hope Community Resources: Connecticut Children's Center

National Quality Improvement Center on Differential Response in Child Protective Services

“In October 2008, the Children’s Bureau awarded a cooperative agreement to American Humane Association and its partners, Walter R. McDonald & Associates, Inc., and the Institute of Applied Research, to operate the National Quality Improvement Center on Differential Response in Child Protective Services (QIC-DR). All three organizations have been pioneers in advancing knowledge about differential response nationally and within States, and are uniquely positioned to collaborate and complement each other’s experiences and networks.”

National Coalition for Child Protection Reform

“The members of the National Coalition for Child Protection Reform have encountered the child welfare system in their professional capacities. Through NCCPR, we work to make that system better serve America’s most vulnerable children by trying to change policies concerning child abuse, foster care and family preservation.”

Foster Care and Families: WNPR’s Where We Live