Kinship Care refers to cases where a relative or non-relative has taken over the full-time care, nurturing and protection of a child. The definition for kinship caregivers also goes beyond the scope of blood relatives and may include an adult who has a familiar relationship or bond with the child and/or family.
Are you a grandparent who is caring for a grandchild in Ohio, but cannot make vital decisions because you don't have legal custody?
For additional advice and tools for kinship care, visit Grandparents.com or review the Ohio Resource Guide for Relatives Caring for Children.
FCCS Kinship Care Services
Closed Case Services
Franklin County Children Services provides support services to those who accept the role of caregiver for a child once a FCCS case has been closed. Kinship families are linked with support groups, one-to-one counseling (when needed) and other community services. The goal is to help the child and caregivers adjust to new and challenging family dynamics and avoid disruption.
The Kinship Care Program may offer the following services to Franklin County Children Services (closed case) kinship care providers:
- Beds, cribs, and dressers (one time only)
- Gift cards for purchasing clothing
- Deposit/rent/mortgage or utility assistance (one time only)
- Gift cards for purchasing food
- Respite care
- Support groups and workshops
All applicants must meet 300 percent of the federal poverty guidelines to qualify, and must have taken legal custody of the children within three years of FCCS case closure. Some of the benefits have a one-time limit and others have annual limits. These services will be in operation as long as funds are available.
Open Case Services
The Kinship Care Program is designed to provide a one-stop-shop for support services to kinship families, while a case is open with FCCS. The goal is to ensure teamwork and communication between kinship families and the agency. Services include:
- Educational orientation about FCCS and support services
- Limited material assistance (to those who qualify)
- Assistance with case transition
Additional information can be found in our Kinship Care brochure. Click here to view a printable copy.
Kinship Permanency Incentive Program
Some kinship families are eligible to receive help through Ohio's Kinship Permanency Incentive Program (KPI). KPI is a state initiative that provides kinship families, who received legal custody or guardianship of a kinship youth on or after July 1, 2005, with cash payments dispersed over a three year period. To provide additional help, Children Services has expanded that program by offering matching funds to eligible kinship caregivers to further assist those who apply for and receive state assistance. Families may be eligible for Children Services' matching funds at redetermination for the state KPI program.
To begin the process to be assessed for KPI funds, the kinship caregiver must fill out the form attached at this link and submit it to the Kinship Department at 855 W. Mound St. Columbus, Ohio 43223.
Franklin County Children Services can only assess kinship caregivers living within Franklin County. If you reside outside of Franklin County, please contact your local children services agency for assistance.
Contact Information:For more information about FCCS' Kinship Care program, call (614) 341-6161.
To make a report of child abuse or neglect in Franklin County, Ohio, call the 24 hour Child Abuse Hotline at 614-229-7000 or visit the offices of Intake & Investigations at 4071 E. Main St., Whitehall, OH 43213.