Home Earns CARE Certification

Black Mountain Home for Children, Youth & Families recently became one of the first agencies in the United States to achieve CARE (Children and Residential Experiences) Agency Certification. The certification through Cornell University recognizes the ministry’s commitment to providing trauma-informed care for abused, neglected, and exploited youth.

“CARE gives our staff the tools they need to meet our kids where they are,” said BMH President Tom Campbell. “We’re grateful to the Duke Endowment for their partnership in funding the first few years of our participation and for helping us create normalcy for our children.”

Key principles emphasized by CARE are being:

-Developmentally focused.

-Family involved.

-Relationship based.

-Competence centered.

-Trauma informed.

-Ecologically oriented.

The children’s home has been providing staff with CARE training for nearly a decade and was among the early adopters of the program. In a letter of congratulations Martha J. Holden, director of the Residential Child Care Project at Cornell University, wrote, “Black Mountain Home for Children’s early adoption of the CARE model made a significant contribution to building the evidence for CARE. In addition, directors have provided consistent and enthusiastic leadership congruent with the CARE principles.”

The ministry exceeded expectations in a Youth Perception Survey that was completed as part of the CARE process. Youth comments relating to staff included, “They are kind and respect my feelings. They all know my name and greet me when they see me.” A young man returning to the program with a sibling said, “We asked to come back here because everyone was good to us.

They really feel like family to me and all of the staff have been really good to me.”

A youth in the ministry’s Independent Living Program for high school graduates wrote, “They are very attentive and they show that they want to work with us to be better and more independent. They show more determination to get us to be someone even when we don’t, and that’s motivating.”

Director of Training Lori Norris-Sutphin said, “This is an incredible endorsement of the impact of CARE and the diligent efforts of our staff. To receive this kind of feedback from the children and youth entrusted to us is validating and encouraging.”

Black Mountain Home for Children meets the needs of children who require out-of-home placement due to issues such as abuse, abandonment, and neglect. The majority of youth served by the ministry come from situations that place them at high risk for sex-trafficking. The ministry provides safe, secure, family-style care for children from birth to college graduation and beyond. CARE Agency certification is for a three-year period. To learn more about the ministry, visit www.BlackMountainHome.org.

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