Innovative Practices Award 2018

The Innovative Practices Award identifies, documents, and celebrates examples of successful approaches to management and service delivery practices adopted by our accredited organizations. Too often great ideas are kept in-house, without recognizing their potential to create change beyond. The purpose of the Innovative Practices Award is to amplify the effect of one great idea by elevating it to the national stage and offering it as a resource for direct service providers, leadership, researchers, and advocates across the full spectrum of human services.  

This year's evaluation process began with a preliminary round of submissions in which applicants provided a one-page synopsis of their innovative practice. Thereafter, a committee made up of COA volunteers and staff selected 6 finalists from over 45 submissions to move forward with a full case study. 

Congratulations to the following 2018 Innovative Practices Award winner!


Foster Care Coalition of Greater St. Louis, Inc.
30 Days to Family®

The youngest victims of the opioid epidemic are children in foster care. The last time the child welfare system was stretched this thin was during the crack epidemic, and children suffered. Many spent their entire childhoods in foster care, aging out at 18 to harrowing outcomes. This time, we know better. 30 Days to Family®, created by the St. Louis-based Foster & Adoptive Care Coalition, brings urgency and innovation to a system groaning under the weight of chronic underfunding and epidemic rates of removal. Years of experimentation and rigorous evaluation have made the Coalition national experts in in the work of family-finding and relative connection. 30 Days to Family® is a field-leading and effective response to the opioid epidemic. Plus, the program saves child welfare agencies at least $300,000 per year. The purpose of 30 days to Family® is to place children with relatives within 30 days of entering foster care. We do this by developing a family tree with an average of 150 relatives, identifying at least two placement options, and helping the family create a plan for stability. Rarely can non-profits offer programmatic solutions to complex problems. However, 30 Days to Family® delivers. That’s why it’s being replicated in 17 sites around the country, in Missouri, Ohio, and Virginia. New York and Washington, DC will be online by the end of 2018. 

 View Full Case Study


Private Organization Accreditation

CSS Healthcare Services provides Community based health services to the young, the elderly and to Individuals with Developmental Disability. Founded in 1997, we have the ability to offer a variety of quality community-based services to our clients, which has greatly contributed to our growth and success.


Catholic Charities, Diocese of Covington

Wm. R. (Bill) Jones, ACSW, MDiv, Chief Executive Officer

Catholic Charities in Covington has been COA accredited since 1996. Though the time spent in completing the self study and hosting the site visit can sometimes feel sometimes daunting, the rewards far outweigh the effort. In our agency, the self-study is a group process that involves every member of the staff from the CEO to the building maintenance staff.
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