Minnesota Department of Human Services - Job Description
Volunteer community members analyze trends, provide independent insights and outside validation of the child protection system, recommend and advocate for needed changes and resources, promote cooperation among community resources and child protection service agencies and increase community understanding and investment in protecting all children. They examine child protection policies, procedures and practices of the state and county child protection agencies. They evaluate the extent to which the agencies are discharging their child protection responsibilities. Panel members gather information through interviews and observations, and review records, case files and reports. The members prepare and make available to the public an annual report containing a summary of the panel’s activities and recommendations to improve the child protection system.
Title: Volunteer Citizen Review Panel Member
Volunteer Experience Can Offer
- A meaningful, important volunteer experience that will add skills, provide insights, interests and challenges.
- Access to a wide variety of community resources and people.
- Access to and an understanding of the child protection system.
- An opportunity to actively participate on the behalf of the system that delivers service to abused and neglected children.
- An opportunity to have a positive impact by addressing the issue of disparities regarding the numbers of children and families of color involved in the child protection system.
- An opportunity to promote and affect positive changes for the well-being of children.
- An opportunity to put your interests, talents and expertise to good use for a worthy cause.
- An opportunity to update and add to your resume.
- Initial orientation regarding the child protection system that includes a broad overview of the child protection system.
- Ongoing training continues in each meeting and in the availability of expenses for covered training and national conferences.
- Ongoing professional support and consultation.
- Reimbursement for mileage, parking and other approved out of pocket expenses.
Qualifications & Skills
- Ability to articulate ideas, concerns and thoughts.
- Ability to listen, be open minded, non-judgmental and constructive.
- Ability to work as part of a team.
- Common sense and maturity.
- Desire to have a positive impact on the child protection service system and those involved.
- Desire to learn about the current child protection service system.
- Desire to promote needed changes in the child protection system as identified by the panel.
- May not be a current county attorney’s office, district court, social or court services employee, or a paid guardian ad litem of a county in which a panel operates.
- May not currently be involved in a child protection, child custody dispute or criminal matter.
- Must maintain complete confidentiality.
- Sensitivity to cultural, ethnic and economic diversity.
- Willingness to make an initial commitment of 2 years.
Duties & Responsibilities
- Advocate for needed resources to protect children from abuse and neglect and to ensure permanent homes for children in a timely manner.
- Assist in the analysis of the information gathered.
- Assist in the compilation of an annual report summarizing the activities of the panel.
- Attend and participate in all meetings (Panel meet monthly).
- Complete initial orientation.
- Gather information by conducting interviews, reviewing files, records and reports.
- Increase community understanding, ownership and investment in child protection.
- Maintain confidentiality.
- Make recommendations for needed policy changes and suggest corrective actions.
- Participate in educational activities to better understand the child protection system.
- Promote cooperation among community resources and child protection service agencies.
- Provide feedback. on what is working well
- Review the child protection service agency’s consistency of practice and compliance with stated policies, laws and procedures.
- Submit reimbursement claims and other requested records in a timely manner.