Advokids provides the only free telephone hotline offering legal information to anyone concerned about a child in foster care in California.
California is home to 60,000 foster children, 1/3 of these foster children are under the age of 5.
Many children spend 2+ years in foster care and experience multiple placements.
Permanent placements and enduring relationships protect foster children’s long-term emotional, cognitive and developmental health. Read more about foster children.
In her TED Talk, San Francisco pediatrician Dr. Burke explains, “We now understand better than we ever have before how exposure to early adversity affects the developing brains and bodies of children.” This new research is essential when advocating on behalf of foster children.
The difference between toxic stress and tolerable stress is an adult caregiver to be a buffer. We need to provide for the caregiver to be that buffer. Nadine Burke Harris, Keynote, Zero to Three National Training Institute, December 2, 2015
Daniel just turned 5 and has been in foster care for 19 months. He is in his third placement. Daniel was going to have to miss his school performance to attend his court hearing this week. His fost-adopt mom and dad were worried because Daniel was afraid to go to court and very sad about missing a big day at school. They called Advokids’ free telephone hotline for help.
Advokids’ legal telephone hotline staff explained to Daniel’s ‘s fost-adopt parents that since he is now 5, the law requires his attorney to see him before each court hearing but he is not required to go to court. We encouraged them to email Daniel’s attorney and underscore Daniel’s history of trauma, his fears, and his need for stability. Daniel’s attorney accommodated a meeting with Daniel in the privacy of her office, and Daniel performed in his school play with his classmates. It was a great day!
Advokids has filed a lawsuit against the Los Angeles Department of Children and Family Services to enforce our state laws which require the agency to give foster caregivers written notices of court hearings and proposed changes in a foster child’s placement. If you are or have been a foster caregiver and meet the criteria, please consider joining our reform efforts as a declarant in our lawsuit. For declarant criteria and instructions, click here. We cannot reform the foster care system and effect change without you.
To read more about our lawsuit: The Voice of Foster Kids – Los Angeles Times, August 8, 2014.
Training: NCACC & Advokids present Juvenile Dependency Law Update: 2015 – The Year in Review Register now!
2016 Project Foster Youth College Scholarships: For the past several years, CYC has been proud to partner with Project Foster Youth to offer $600 college scholarships to current and former foster youth. Applications are due by April 1, 2016. Apply now!
Take a look at “System on the Brink,” published by the American Civil Liberties Union of California that shows how giant caseloads in the California child welfare system are incredibly detrimental to the children and families in the system.
My journey with Advokids began with one prayer, one click and one letter on their website. Advokids was heaven sent. They immediately responded, educated, empowered, and assisted me beyond belief. After seven months of excruciating heartache I am forever grateful that I was reunited with my little girl. Because of Advokids’ tireless efforts, dedication and passion to our children, foster parents and relative caretakers, my faith has been completely restored in pure human goodness!!! Thank you! Tiana – Foster Parent 2014
Advokids was solely instrumental in my most recent foster child being reunited with his mother out-of-state. You see, he and his mother were residents of a state other than California, but the child was detained from his father locally, after he had been visiting with him here in California for about 2 months. Neither the child's attorney nor either of the parent's attorneys were familiar with the laws that addressed such cases. I contacted Margaret and Jan at Advokids, and they were able to provide me with examples of case law that were utilized by the child's attorney at the most recent court hearing, which resulted in the judge's order for DCFS to return the child to his non-offending mother in their home state.
Thank you Advokids!
Tiffany, Foster Parent and Los Angeles Social Worker 2014
We finally adopted Mazie on May 6th! I will never forget what a lifesaver you were to me almost three years ago. We can all make a difference, even more so when we work together. I believe that everyone needs to better understand kids in foster care so there is more empathy, understanding, and involvement. Keep up the good work.
Lisa – Adoptive Parent 2014
As an agency social worker I am always looking for support from those educated about the law and dedicated to helping foster youth. I have reached out to Advokids on a variety of occasions asking for help and information on law. They have never failed me. Furthermore, I usually receive an email or a phone call in under an hour's time.
I encourage my foster parents to contact Advokids when in need and have several families who call them almost daily. Their kindness never wavers and their advice is priceless. Danielle - Social Worker, Modesto, CA 2014
I wanted to update you a bit and thank you again for all of your calm assistance during the sometimes turbulent last 14 months. Your guidance and compassion during this process was more than appreciated. It wasn't until we contacted you that we felt someone actually cared. You actually took the time to listen and talk us off all of the "ledges" this process presents. Your quick responses provided us comfort and reassurance, and we cannot thank you enough for being there for us.
Kristin – Foster to Adopt Parent 2014
Words don't even come close to describing what Advokids means to me and my family. They saved our foster child's LIFE!!! The whole staff treats each child as if it is their own. At Advokids, the child is not a number. He or she is a real person with emotions and feelings. Please donate so that they can continue to help each one of us to give our foster children a VOICE in the courtroom.
Kelli – Foster to Adopt Parent 2014