Families Celebrate Their Togetherness 6/18/19 06/19/18 1:21:33 PM
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Face painting – just one of the many fun activities.
– Photos courtesy of The Douglas County Separate Juvenile Court
Families Celebrate Their Togetherness
By Lorraine Boyd
The Daily Record
More than 100 moms, dads, kids and siblings – along with attorneys, judges and other professionals – flocked to the 9th Annual Summer Family Picnic on June 2 at the Omaha Children’s Museum. They were celebrating the reunification of families through the efforts of the juvenile justice system in Douglas County. Similar events are held nationwide.
The Rutherfords – Rick and Kathleen and their daughter Elena – celebrated as a family.
The event is the celebration of the success stories of The Separate Juvenile Court for Douglas County, Nebraska. When juvenile court has to intervene in the lives of families, its goal is to protect children and preserve and reunify families where abuse or neglect has occurred. Each year that goal is accomplished in Douglas County for hundreds of families.
This is the ninth year holding a local celebration for Douglas County in conjunction with the nationwide effort to commend the work of families, social workers, court personnel, mental health experts and others involved in bringing children and parents back together.
This year’s celebration featured the usual fan favorites: food, games and fun. It brought together families, court personnel, lawyers, social workers, community service providers and other interested people in the community.
Partners for the local event included the CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocates), Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services, the Nebraska Families Collaborative (now PromiseShip), Foster Care Review Board, Voices for Children, Girls and Boys Town, ConAgra, Lueder Construction and a host of local attorneys who work in Douglas County Juvenile Court.
Organizations involved in National Reunification Day on the national level include the American Bar Association National Project to Improve Representation for Parents Involved in the Child Welfare System, the ABA Center on Children and the Law, the Annie E. Casey Foundation, Casey Family Programs, the National Association of Counsel for Children, the National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges, the National Foster Care Coalition and the National Quality Improvement Center on Non-Resident Fathers and the Child Welfare System.