St. Nicholas organization leads state in adoptions

St. Nicholas-based Family Support Services of North Florida is ranked first in the state for the number of children adopted from foster care last fiscal year, according to recent reports.
The lead agency for foster care, adoption and family preservation in Duval and Nassau counties was successful in placing 318 foster children in permanent homes through adoption, making FSS the No. 1 community-based care agency in Florida for adoptions in fiscal year 2011-2012.
With 3,252 foster children adopted statewide last year, one in ten children adopted from foster care in Florida in fiscal year 2011-2012 were adopted through FSS, numbers show.
“FSS continues to work in partnership with Judge David Gooding, placing a strong emphasis on finding permanent homes for children in foster care,” said Lee Kaywork, chief executive director, FSS. “When a child becomes available for adoption, we leave no stone unturned in finding that child a ‘forever home’ and Judge Gooding leads the charge in ensuring adoptions do not languish in the courts.”
FSS is celebrating 10 years of service in the community as part of the recent accolades.
Kaywork said FSS also focuses on family preservation services to help at-risk families thereby preventing children from entering foster care, and to provide services and training to parents whose children have been removed from the home so the children can be safely returned to their family. The group partners with local non-profit organizations including Children’s Home Society, Daniel, Jewish Family & Community Services, Mental Health Resource Center and Neighbor to Family.

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