Doing FNS Work While Supporting Youth With Other HF4Y Goals - MtS DEMS HF4Y CoP Call - May 2020
Some youth who come into HF4Y may not be focused on doing FNS work - they may have come into the program because of family breakdown, or maybe their focus is on establishing their independence so they aren't immediately interested in engaging any family or natural supports. If an FNS approach is integral to providing youth with wraparound supports according to the core principles of HF4Y (especially social inclusion and community integration), how can we take this approach while also supporting youth to become independent? This is especially important to think about now as we continue to serve youth throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, as many youth have moved in with family/natural supports to isolate, or may be more willing to do FNS work right now. Below are some key learnings about how to take an FNS approach in HF4Y, based on the Making the Shift HF4Y Community of Practice call that happened on May 26, 2020.
- FNS is not just a stand alone program model. In HF4Y, FNS can be applied as a philosophy to work the way you need it to based on the type of program that you're operating.
- An FNS approach can be taken right at intake. Building on questions on an intake form can open up conversations about family/natural supports - for example, when a young person fills out their emergency contact information, ask "Why is this person your emergency contact? Do we have your consent to talk to them? Is this someone you want on your journey with you right now?"
- Eco-mapping can be a useful tool. This activity can be especially helpful in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic, to support your conversations with youth around maintaining safety and minimizing risk for family and natural supports who they may be seeing.