CYF Update

Children, Youth and Family News
Friday, February 19, 2021



LSA CYF members,

If you have any questions, would like to be added to the CYF Update mailing list, or have recommendations for future webinars, please contact Caitlyn Gudmundsen at

To view all previous issues of our CYF Update newsetters, prior webinars on a wide variety of EBPs and other topics, Family First Act resources, and more, please visit our CYF members-only resource page. Contact for the login and password.

LSA Updates

COVID-19 Vaccine Resource Hub

As Lutheran Services in America continues to update its COVID-19 Vaccine Resource Hub, we are asking members to share strategies to increase access and reduce barriers to COVID-19 vaccination.  Please submit your organization’s programs or strategies to Special Enrollment Period 2021

LSA’s partners at the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) have released new resources for the Special Enrollment Period, lasting through May 15. Read more here

Advocacy Updates

LSA Advocacy Update

The Biden administration has halted implementation of the Trump era regulation that would have removed non-discrimination protections, initially slated to go into effect on February 11th.  No changes to the existing nondiscrimination regulations in HHS-funded programs based on sex, religion, sexual orientation and gender identify are expected at this time while the current administration reviews the regulation. We anticipate that following this review, the regulation will not be implemented.

In reconciliation, Committees in the U.S. House of Representatives are continuing their work towards passage of President Biden's $1.9 trillion COVID-19 relief package. Democrats, who narrowly control both the House and Senate, chose a budgetary process known as "reconciliation" to move the package because it requires a simple majority vote in the Senate, and lacking Senate Republican support, they have just enough votes to pass the package without Republican help. The House Committee process has resulted in a narrow expansion of the Patient Protection Program to allow organizations with more than 500 employees to be eligible for PPP as long as employees are spread across multiple locations with no single location having more than 500 employees. Self-funded unemployment reimbursement has been increased from 50 to 75%. Home and Community-Based Services will see dedicated funding in the form of an enhanced 7.35% FMAP for states that meet certain requirements. Other provisions include a $15 minimum wage phased-in over five years, $350 billion in aid to state and local governments, extension of temporary enhanced unemployment benefits through August 29, 2021, and $1,400 in stimulus checks for individuals earning less than $75,000 annually. Many of these provisions, particularly the phased-in increase in the minimum wage could eliminated or substantially modified when the Senate takes up the package. The House is expected to complete its work and vote on the legislation late next week. More information on the package as it currently stands can be found here in our detailed summary.

Meanwhile, President Biden has nominated Chiquita Brooks-LaSure to be the next Administrator for the Centers for Medicaid and Medicare Services. Ms. Brooks-LaSure worked in President Barrack Obama's Administration to help with the initial implementation of the Affordable Care Act. The Senate will begin to take up Xavier Becerra's nomination to be HHS Secretary next week.

Join us here in urging lawmakers to retain the elements of this package that help nonprofit front line providers and continue to work toward addressing all our remaining needs.

President Biden's Coronavirus Relief Plan Includes Focus on Child Poverty

The 1.9 trillion dollar coronavirus relief plan proposed by the Biden Administration includes a proposal to temporarily increase the child tax credit (currently $2,000) to $3,600 per child under age 6 and $3,000 for children up to age 17 annually. The plan also removes restrictions based on parents’ tax liability so that the families in the lowest income percentile have access to the full credit. Researchers estimate that Biden’s relief plan would decrease the child poverty rate to less than 7%. Though the plan was pitched as an immediate response to the COVID-19 crisis, the child tax credit could have lasting effects on child poverty in the U.S. Read more here.

February 10th's Front Line Hero was Valery Trigsted, teen leader, entrepreneur, and intern at Concordia Place. Read their story here.

Congress is Moving to Lengthen Medicaid Coverage For New Moms

Congressional Democrats have taken on a side project as they push forward President Biden's coronavirus relief bill: nudging states to broaden their Medicaid programs. That includes lengthening coverage for new moms — a key Medicaid population who, in some states, lose Medicaid coverage relatively quickly after giving birth. Read more here.

Virtual Meetings and Resources

Join the National Forum on COVID-19 Vaccine

February 22-24, 2021 Register here to participate

The National Forum on COVID-19 Vaccine is a virtual event that will unite representatives from across the US government, with tribal, state, local, and territorial leaders and representatives from public health, healthcare systems, national and community-based non-governmental organizations, education, private industry, unions, and faith-based organizations. All have a role in supporting COVID-19 vaccination. The Forum aims to promote the most effective strategies to build trust and confidence in COVID-19 vaccines, use data to optimize vaccine implementation, and provide participants with practical information for increasing vaccine access in communities nationwide, especially for persons at increased risk of COVID-19 disease and those who may face barriers to vaccination. Read more here.

Stronger Together: The Benefits of Intergenerational Programs for Everyone

Wednesday, February 24 1:00 PM ET Register here

On Wednesday, February 24, at 1:00 PM ET, Generations United and the American Society on Aging will host Stronger Together: The Benefits of Intergenerational Programs for Everyone, where representatives from Generations United and the NYU Silver School of Social Work will share the latest research and resources from the field, innovative models, and practical tips for creating or expanding high-quality intergenerational programs. Participants will discuss the growing body of research and innovations that reflect the ways in which intergenerational programs are meeting critical human needs from social isolation to social justice, while building empathy across generations.

Addressing the Adverse Impacts of COVID-19 on Children with Serious Emotional Disorders

Wednesday, March 3, 2021 1:00 PM EST Register here

SAMHSA sponsored webinar addressing the effect the pandemic has had on children who have isolated at home participating in distance learning-- academically, socially and emotionally, especially for children with pre-existing serious emotional disorders and their families. Read more here.

"The Struggle is Real: Finding Healing During Difficult Times"

Thursday, March 4 1:00 PM to 2:15 PM ET Register here

We are (and have been) dealing with extremely challenging times: from navigating a global pandemic to enduring persistent systemic and institutional racism to withstanding debilitating economic challenges. Youth Thrive recognizes the toll that these things can collectively take on our mental and physical health and especially on young people; as some would say “the struggle is real.” That struggle will be the subject of the next Youth Thrive Alive Forum: The Struggle is Real: Finding Healing During Difficult Times, taking place on March 4, 2021 from 1PM - 2:15PM ET, which will discuss the mental health needs of young people during COVID-19 and ways to center healing and well-being in our practice. Join this conversation featuring Dr. Shawn Ginwright, Founder and CEO of the Flourish Agenda, Inc., one of the nation’s leading innovators, provocateurs, and thought leaders for youth and Professor of Education and Africana Studies at San Francisco State, along with Kendall Cook, young leader, activist, organizer and Anna Gennari, Deputy Director of Foster Youth in Action.

Title IV-E Prevention Services Clearinghouse - New Ratings Available

The Administration for Children and Families (ACF) is excited to announce that new ratings are now available for the following programs and services:

Click here to review a working list of the next programs and services planned for systematic review.

Child Welfare, Juvenile Justice, Education, and Behavioral Health News

Studies Highlight 'Unprecedented and Unique Dangers' For Children During COVID-19

Two new studies investigating child maltreatment during the COVID-19 pandemic reveal "concerning results" that confirm warning signs seen early in the pandemic, according to researchers at UAB and the University of Michigan. Read more here.

February 11th's Front Line Hero was Deirdre Bagley, President of Lutheran Volunteer Corps. Read their story here.

U.S. To Resettle More Child Refugees Fleeing Violence Around the World

As part of its overhaul of U.S. refugee policy, the Biden administration is planning to offer humanitarian refuge to more children fleeing violence around the world, according to a government report obtained by CBS News. Read more here.

ACF Updates Child Care and Development Waiver Approvals

The Administration for Children and Families (ACF) released an update which summarizes waiver approvals for all requests reviewed between March 1, 2020 through January 28, 2021 and waivers by provision approved as of February 2, 2021. The update includes a cumulative table summarizing each waiver approval organized by state, territory, and tribe. Read the summary here.

In New COVID-19 Guidance, CDC Recommends 5 Key Strategies To Reopen Schools

The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released guidelines for reopening schools that focus on five key Covid-19 mitigation strategies: the universal and correct wearing of masks; physical distancing; washing hands; cleaning facilities and improving ventilation; and contact tracing, isolation and quarantine. Read more here.

Supporting the First 1000 Days of A Child's Life: An Anti-Racist Blueprint for Early Childhood Well-Being and Child Welfare Prevention

The Center for the Study of Social Policy has released a new report, Supporting the First 1,000 Days of A Child’s Life: An Anti-Racist Blueprint for Early Childhood Well-Being and Child Welfare Prevention. Based on the understanding that to support the health and well-being of children and families of color, we must implement comprehensive strategies that address systemic and institutional racism, this report offers a blueprint for creating equity-centered, anti-racist policies that support the health and well-being of children and families of color. Read the report here.

February 5th's Front Line Hero was Dr. LaSharnda Beckwith, President and CEO of Lutheran Social Services of Southern California (LSSSC). Read their story here.

With Frontline Workers Refusing Vaccination, Youth Residential Facilities Consider Future Mandates

Staff in group homes for vulnerable youth have faced pandemic trials like few others in America's low-paid frontline workforce. Now, a new problem is roiling the residential care industry: Large numbers of staff are skeptical of the new vaccine's safety and don't want to take the shot. This widespread wariness has many providers discussing whether they may need to require the injections at some point in the future. Read more here.

Federal Grant Opportunities

Promise Neighborhoods Programs

Promise Neighborhoods Program provides grants to significantly improve the educational and developmental outcomes of children and youth in the most distressed communities. Read more here. Closing date: March 5, 2021.

Strategies to Support Children Exposed to Violence

Grants to develop support services for children exposed to violence in their homes, schools, and communities; and to develop, enhance, and implement violent crime reduction strategies that focus on violent juvenile offenders. Priority will be given to applications that address the challenges in rural communities. Read more here. Closing date: March 8, 2021.

Still Open - Paycheck Protection Program

The loan portal for the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) reopened in January. This program provides small businesses, including faith-based organizations, with funds to pay up to 8 weeks of payroll costs including benefits. Funds can also be used to pay interest on mortgages, rent, and utilities.

Preventing Trafficking of Girls

This solicitation from the Office of Violent Crimes (OVC) provides funding for organizations to support prevention and early intervention programs for girls who are at-risk of, or are victims of, sex trafficking. Read more hereClosing Date: March 15, 2021.

Mentoring For Youth Affected by the Opioid Crisis and Drug Addiction

This program supports the implementation and delivery of mentoring services to youth who are currently abusing or addicted to drugs, youth at risk for abusing drugs, and youth with family members who are currently abusing or addicted to drugs. Read more hereClosing date: March 16, 2021.

Emerging Issues in Maternal and Child Health

The purpose of this program is to strengthen the capacities of state- and/or local-level organizations to respond to emerging public health issues affecting maternal and child health (MCH) populations. Read more hereClosing date: April 9, 2021.