Community, Policy and Program Development ACOSA Honors Students for Promoting Foster Youth Welfare Wayne State’s Coalition of Community Social Workers (CCSW) student organization recently gained national recognition for their efforts to improve Michigan’s foster care system. The Association for Community Organization and Social Administration (ACOSA) gave CCSW its 2016 Outstanding Students of the Year Award for organizing the Michigan’s Children KidSpeak, which in August brought together a listening panel of elected officials, state policymakers and influencers to hear first-hand accounts of the experiences of youth in the foster care system.
Empowering communities is one of the most important things that social workers do. From criminal justice programs to environmental initiatives to social justice endeavors, our faculty, staff and students are helping communities have a voice in the policy decisions that shape the way they live.
Held annually on Wayne State’s campus, KidsSpeak has numerous sponsors that include the School of Social Work and the Transition to Independence Program, a universitywide program whose mission is to increase college access and improve graduation rates of foster care youth. CCSW in 2016 assumed responsibility for outreach to participants and legislators, media relations, event registration, greeting and seating, and staff support. The ACOSA award was accepted on Nov. 5 at the Council on Social Work Education’s Annual Program Meeting in Atlanta by M.S.W. advisor Tamarie Willis, B.S.W. student Caleb Claudio, and M.S.W. student Dominique Schroeder.