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EVIDENCE-BASED, TRAUMA-INFORMEDSupport Services for Families

Supporting stronger families for stronger communities

At The Children’s Institute, we believe strong families are at the heart of healthy communities. Our dedicated team provides a wide array of family support services (formerly Project STAR Pittsburgh) to help families and children grow stronger, from prevention and reunification services to care coordination services. All of our programs are built around the idea of permanency — supporting safe, nurturing, and lasting families — and putting the health and safety of the child first.

In-Home Family Services

With the primary goal of keeping each child safely with their birth family, our In-Home Family Services team provides evidence-based, trauma-informed services to preserve families at risk of having a child removed from the home and to reunify families who have had a child removed. Our experienced team accepts referrals for a range of services, including:
  • Preservation and reunification services
  • In-home, intensive family support
  • Individualized care to meet family needs

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Visit Coaching

When children have been removed from their parents’ custody, our Visit Coaching program works to unite the family sooner and more safely. Using an evidence-based, trauma-informed approach, our compassionate and dedicated team empowers parents with the tools and resources they need to succeed. Using proven strategies, our team works toward:
  • More normalized family time 
  • Increased flexibility of visits
  • Improved parent/child interaction
  • Reduced time in foster care 
  • Faster family reunification 

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SWAN Services

County-Referred, except for Post-Permanency
As a State Wide Adoption Network (SWAN) affiliate, we bring more than a decade of experience to providing individualized, trauma-informed permanency services to both children in the child welfare system and the families who care for them. Our services include:
  • Child Profile
  • Child Preparation 
  • Child Specific Recruitment
  • Family Profile
  • Finalization 
  • Older Child Matching Initiative
  • Post-Adoption Contact Agreement (PACA)
  • Placement
  • Post-Permanency

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Infant Parent Empowerment Program

Our community’s youngest members are also among our most vulnerable. That’s why when families with children under the age of 3 (or who are expecting), experience challenges that threaten their ability to remain intact, our Infant Parent Empowerment Program provides our most intensive, evidence-based support services. We accept referrals for a wide array of services, including:
  • Prevention and reunification services 
  • In-home, intensive family support
  • Individual and group sessions
  • Plan of Safe Care development

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Foster Care Placement Services

Based on declines in the participation of our Foster Care program and recent changes by several of the counties who we contract with to provide these services, The Children’s Institute is winding down our Foster Care Placement Services and will focus on strengthening other areas of our Family Support Services. As such, The Children’s Institute will end our contracts to provide Foster Care Placement Services effective Jan. 1, 2022. 

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Take Action

Not sure what the next step is? You can always call our Information Center at 412.420.2400 to speak to a team member who can direct you to the support and answers you need.

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