CHILD & FAMILY SERVICES
The goal of the Child and Family Services program is to prevent the break-up of Penobscot families and to ensure that the removal of a Penobscot child from his or her parent or Indian custodian is done only as a last resort. The program consists of two components, Family Support and Child Protection.
The Assistant Director for Children's Services provides support services to families that are experiencing circumstances and stresses which affect their ability to appropriately parent their children. Although entirely voluntary, family support services have been highly successful in preventing the need for both crisis and child protective intervention.
In addition, the Assistant Director is responsible for the development and implementation of community based programming aimed at the prevention of substance abuse and violence. This includes overseeing the Youth Activities Program, facilitating many youth groups and implementing awareness campaigns aimed at all community members such as the annual Child Abuse Prevention Month celebration in April.
The responsibility of the Child Protective Case Worker is to investigate allegations of abuse and/or neglect and to take whatever legal action is required to protect the welfare of the child. When it is necessary to remove a child from his or her home, the worker must develop a reunification plan which allows for the return of the child to his or her parents or custodian in the shortest time possible.