Friday, May 29, 2020

Wendy’s Wonderful Kids Program

Catholic Social Services of Montana is pleased to be implementing Wendy’s Wonderful Kids, a signature program of the Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption that is bringing children waiting to be adopted from foster care one step closer to safe, loving and permanent homes.

Through Wendy’s Wonderful Kids, the Foundation provides grants to adoption agencies to hire and train adoption recruiters who implement the Foundation’s evidence-based Child-Focused Recruitment Model. This model is up to three times more effective at serving children who have been in foster care the longest, including older youth, sibling groups and children with special needs.

Catholic Social Services of Montana currently has oneWendy’s Wonderful Kids recruiter who serves Western Montana. Our recruiter works with smaller caseloads, ensuring that she can provide these children with the attention, resources and support they need and find the adoptive families they deserve.

Katie Lamach

Wendy’s Wonderful Kids Recruiter

[email protected]

To learn more, visit, subscribe to the Foundation’s newsletter and follow on Facebook and Twitter.

For more information contact Katie at 406-442-4130 or 406-461-4880.

New Research results:

The most comprehensive evaluation ever conducted on family recruitment practices for children in foster care was released from the  Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption (DTFA) in October 2012.
The five-year study, led by Child Trends,  found children served by a child-focused recruitment model experiteen boy 2enced substantially higher rates of adoption than children not served by this model.  Child-focused recruitment is a model used by DTFA’s signature program, Wendy’s Wonderful Kids (WWK),  which provides local adoption agencies with grants to hire dedicated adoption recruiters who spend 100 percent of their job focused on finding waiting children forever homes.
The study found older children and children with mental health disorders achieved even higher rates of adoption,  providing new hope to the many children who enter foster care and often languish for years or “age out” of foster care altogether without the support of permanent,  loving families.
The Foundation commissioned the five-year study of Wendy’s Wonderful Kids to evaluate the effectiveness of the program’s child-focused recruitment model.
The research shows that:

  • Children in foster care served by WWK recruiters are more than 1.7 times more likely to be adopted than those not served by WWK.
  • For older children, the impact of the WWK model is greater and increases with age:
  • For children referred to WWK at age 8, the likelihood of adoption was one-and-one-half times higher;
  • For children referred at age 11, the likelihood was two times higher; and
  • For children referred at age 15, the likelihood of adoption was three times higher.
  • Children with mental health disorders served by WWK are three times more likely to find forever families than those not served by WWK.