Wendy’s Wonderful Kids Ready To Support Child-Specific Recruitment
There are 283 children and youth in Colorado who are waiting for families, but their futures are uncertain because an adoptive family has not been identified. As professionals involved in child welfare, we all agree that these children deserve a safe, loving and supportive parent by their side throughout all of life’s ups and downs. This is where a Wendy’s Wonderful Kids Recruiter can support a county’s child-specific recruitment efforts.
Wendy’s Wonderful Kids (WWK) is an evidence-based program developed by the Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption. Children and youth are up to three times more likely to be adopted if they are served by WWK.
The Adoption Exchange has four WWK Recruiters who serve 56-75 young people throughout Colorado. Counties interested in working with a Wendy’s Wonderful Kids Recruiter should contact Chelsea Taylor, Adoption Recruitment Director at The Adoption Exchange, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Wendy's Wonderful Kid Model
The WWK recruitment process is child-focused and includes eight inter-connected components: initial child referral, network-building, case record review, adoption preparation, relationship with the child, assessment of adoption readiness, recruitment plan and diligent search. The process is tailored to meet specific needs for the child and youth, such as their vision for their future life, and connections they value and want to maintain. This allows for the recruiter to work with youth of any age, but with a focus on older youth who are in their teens.
WWK Recruiters build strong, trusting relationships each child or youth, which is especially helpful when working with young people who are apprehensive about the idea of adoption. WWK serves all youth, regardless of disabilities, history of trauma, race or ethnicity, religion or sexual orientation or expression. The recruiter stays on a case through the matching process with a prospective family, the child transitioning into that pre-adoptive home, the placement into the pre-adoptive home and the adoption finalization itself, creating continuity for the youth, adoption professionals on the child’s team as well as the adoptive family.