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MDHHS partnerships with community, faith-based groups that support foster children highlighted at summit

For Immediate Release: April 21, 2016

FRANKENMUTH, Mich. – Children in the state’s foster care system benefit from the many community and faith-based organizations that help find them loving homes, state officials said at a summit held today, April 21, 2016.

Nearly 200 people from around Michigan attended the fifth annual Community and Faith-Based Summit on Foster Care and Adoption.

“We need foster and adoptive homes for children from various religious and cultural backgrounds to meet the unique needs of every child in care,” said Steve Yager, director of the Children’s Services Agency within the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services, which provides services to the 13,000 children in the state’s foster care system. “That’s why it’s so important for us to engage communities and faith-based communities in every Michigan county. We need them to help support our children in care and to support our foster, adoptive, biological and kinship parents.”

Three-thousand children are available for adoption in Michigan, and about 300 of them do not have an identified adoptive family. Community and faith-based organizations help recruit foster and adoptive parents and provide support to foster and adoptive families.

Their efforts in recent years have helped Michigan improve services to foster youth, playing a key role in progress that led to a federal judge in February approving an agreement that puts the state on the path toward exiting court oversight of its child welfare system. “I’m proud of the progress we’ve made,” Yager said. And our community and faith partners have greatly contributed to this progress.”

For information on becoming a foster parent, call 855-MICHKIDS or learn more at To adopt, call 800-589-6273 or go to

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