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Featured Articles

  1. Article number 1 - YouthCare - What do you need to know?
  2. Article number 2 - PATH Beyond Adoption: Support for Post-Adoptive Families
  3. Article number 3 - Protecting Children…it’s the law in Illinois
  4. Article number 4 - Reporting Abuse or Neglect
  5. Article number 5 - Heart Gallery of Illinois – Children in Need of a Forever Family
  6. Article number 6 - What is Family First?
  •  IlliniCare - What do you need to know?

    YouthCare - What do you need to know?

    ​Currently, DCFS and the Illinois Department of Healthcare & Family Services (HFS) – the state's Medicaid agency – are planning for the implementation of managed care for DCFS. They are working with YouthCare, private agency providers and other child welfare experts to ensure youth's needs are prioritized during the implementation of managed care.

    Managed care implementation date extended to April 1, 2020.

    Youthcare is holding orientation meetings for transitioning youth in care to Medicaid managed care. To find a meeting near you, click here

    For more information, read the Managed Care Fact Sheet.

    Questions? Connect with YouthCare via email at or call 844-289-2264; or connect with DCFS via email at or call the DCFS Advocacy Office at 800-232-3798.

  •  PATH Website

    PATH Beyond Adoption: Support for Post-Adoptive Families

    ​Building a family by adoption or guardianship is the beginning step of a new journey, and Illinois DCFS is committed to supporting families along the way. The PATH (Partners Available to Help) Beyond Adoption support line is the entry point to connect families that move to permanency with DCFS or by private or international adoption to available resources.

    Call 866-538-8892 during business hours or leave a voicemail message at any time to:

    • Connect to resources
    • Get answers to questions
    • Seek counseling and other services
    • Locate a support group
    • Update your address and phone number

    Visit the new Path Beyond Adoption website for information, resources and support for post-adoptive families.

  •  DCFS Mandated Reporter Poster Educators

    Protecting Children…it’s the law in Illinois

    ​If you suspect a child is being abused or neglected you have a social responsibility to report it to the hotline. Most professionals in education, health care, law enforcement and social work are required by law to report suspected neglect or abuse. These individuals are called mandated reporters.

    To help mandated reporters understand their critical role in protecting children, DCFS administers a free online training course entitled Recognizing and Reporting Child Abuse: Training for Mandated Reporters, available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

    For more information about the guidelines for mandated reporters in Illinois, read the Mandated Reporter Manual in English or en español.

    In non-emergency situations, mandated reporters may report suspected child abuse or neglect using the new Online Reporting System.  To learn more, click here.

  •  Reporting Abuse or Neglect

    Reporting Abuse or Neglect

    DCFS has the primary responsibility of protecting children through the investigation of suspected abuse or neglect by parents and other caregivers in a position of trust or authority over the child.

    Call the 24-hour Child Abuse Hotline at 800-25-ABUSE (800-252-2873 or TTY 1-800-358-5117) if you suspect that a child has been harmed or is at risk of being harmed by abuse or neglect. If you believe a child is in immediate danger of harm, call 911 first.
    In non-emergency situations, mandated reporters may report suspected child abuse or neglect using the new Online Reporting System.  To learn more, click here.

    Your confidential call will not only make sure the child is safe, but also help provide the child’s family the services they need to provide a safe, loving and nurturing home.

  •  Heart Gallery of Illinois

    Heart Gallery of Illinois – Children in Need of a Forever Family

    ​​Every child deserves to grow up safe, secure and loved. Children from all across the state of all ages, backgrounds and abilities are taken into temporary care when it is not safe for them to remain at home. Many are in need of a loving home not only for themselves, but also a little brother or sister. Most children waiting to be adopted are living temporarily with loving relatives or licensed foster families. Some live in larger, professionally-staffed group settings.

    DCFS maintains an online listing with pictures and descriptions of children in need of a loving family. Please click here or call 312-328-2778 to learn how you can change the life of a child – and your own!

  •  FFPSA

    What is Family First?

    What is Family First?
    The Family First Prevention Services Act (FFPSA)was signed into law on February 9, 2018. This act reforms the federal child welfare financing streams, Title IV-E and Title IV-B, of the Social Security Act. The act supports important reforms in child welfare as we re-imagine DCFS as a department that emphasizes prevention, early intervention and evidence-based practices for children and families. The act also seeks to improve the well-being of children already in foster care by incentivizing states to reduce placement of children in congregate care.

    The FFPSA transforms federal financing for child welfare programming in two major ways:

    1. FFPSA allows Title IV-E funding to be used to fund up to one-year of evidence-based prevention services for children and families who are “candidates for foster care,” i.e., at “imminent risk” of child welfare involvement
    2. FFPSA regulates financial support for youth in congregate care settings to limit long stays in congregate care, provides residential treatment options for youth with clinical needs and establishes criteria for Qualified Residential Treatment Programs (QRTPs)

    For more information, click on the title or the image.