In the News: Oregon’s Relief Nurseries Support Families and Keep Kids Out of Foster Care

by Family Nurturing Center

Photo Caption: Photo taken at the Chelsea’s Place Family Building Blocks Relief Nursery in Salem.

Written by Melissa Duclos for The Children’s Institute.

Children’s Institute: Can you explain how Relief Nurseries, which are unique to Oregon, use a multidisciplinary approach to serve children and families?

Cara Copeland: Relief Nurseries have been in Oregon for just over 40 years. The core model relies on three things: a therapeutic classroom for children, home visiting for parents, and parent education. A lot of our children are behind developmentally, so we work one-on-one to make sure they’re ready for kindergarten, focusing on the social emotional development of kids ages 0­–5. The home visiting and parent education provide tools and emotional support. Many Relief Nurseries also have other supports: they might have food and diapers available, or mental health, drug and alcohol counseling, or peer services.