South Carolina Integration Institute

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South Carolina Integration Institute - Father and Daughter outside

The South Carolina Integration Institute deepened the collaboration between the state’s Child Support Services Division, its Department of Corrections and the Center for Fathers and Families. Post-Institute, the agencies secured a grant to serve young fathers exiting the prison system. They are providing relationship, employment and skill building services to help stabilize these fathers and their families.

In addition, the Child Support Services Division is in the process of installing televisions to play videos about healthy relationships in its waiting rooms and providing print resources to help clients develop healthy relationship skills.

Partner with the Department of Corrections and the Center for Fathers and Families to create a program that enables youthful offenders with child support orders to develop healthy relationship and employment skills following their release.

Prior to the Institute, the Center for Fathers and Families was providing some direct services to Child Support Services Division. Discussions during the Institute led the partners to pursue a fatherhood grant with the Department of Corrections. Since being awarded the grant, they have worked together to deliver integrated services to young fathers involved with the justice and child support systems.

The Child Support Services Division has adopted a trauma-informed approach to serving clients. It has invested in training all front-line staff to recognize trauma and make appropriate service referrals. Equipping case managers to deliver holistic, trauma-informed case management aligns with best practices and may enhance its effectiveness.

It takes time to achieve integration without reinventing the wheel. It can be challenging to absorb all of the relevant information and determine the most efficient and effective way to leverage partnerships.

South Carolina had an early win in the form of a grant to serve young fathers involved with the justice and child support systems. The Child Support Services Division, Department of Corrections and the Center for Fathers and Families have leveraged these resources to provide relationship, employment and skill building services to youthful offenders.

The Resource Center’s tip sheets for families on parenting, financial management, communication and conflict management were identified as helpful resources to place in the Child Support Services Division’s waiting rooms.

The core partners in South Carolina’s integration efforts are the Child Support Services Division, the Department of Corrections and the Center for Fathers and Families.