Kinship Navigation Services

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Kinship Care

Are you raising a child who is a relative or family friend? If you answer “yes,” you are a Kinship Provider!

What is Kinship Care? 
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 Arrangements are made by the parents directly with relatives, without professional intervention.
 Arrangements are made by the court or child welfare system and could include training and an additional approval processes.  


Staying Connected

Kinship care refers to any time a child is being cared for by relatives or close family friends known to the child (often referred to as fictive kin). Relatives are the first choice when children cannot live with their birth parents because it keeps the child connected to family and makes the separation from their parents less traumatic.

Family, community, and culture promote a sense of well-being and belonging for children.

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Benefits of Kinship Care

  • Reduces the trauma children may experience if they were to live with  people unfamiliar to them (American Bar Association, 2017)
  • Provides the opportunity for children to live with people they know and trust (The Annie B. Casey Foundation, 2020)
  • Allows children to maintain connections to extended family, siblings, and community which are essential to a child’s well-being (University of Missouri, 2020)
  • Reduces the moves a child may experience between caregivers.  (Helton, 2011)
  • Decreases behavioral problems of children placed with kin, as rated by their caregivers.  (The Annie B. Casey Foundation, 2020)
What We Do
Service Connections:

Arlington County’s Kinship Navigation Program helps kinship families connect to services, such as childcare, education, health care, legal assistance, financial help, and support from professionals or peers.

  • Attending specialized kinship training
  • Participating in an assessment and home study
Support Groups:

We offer a monthly kinship support group for informal and formal relative caregivers on the second Tuesday of each month from 6:30p.m. to 7:30 p.m. Join us by sending an email or by calling 703-228-1557.

"It’s a great support group and outlet to share what you are going through.” 
-- S Thompson, Adoptive Kinship Parent

Contact Us

For further information, please contact Michelle Sosa or 703-228-1557.

Kinship Navigation Referral Form / Formulario de referencia de navegación de parentesco




American Bar Association. (2017, July 1). Kinship Care is Better for Children and Families. Https://Www.Americanbar.Org/. Retrieved January 12, 2021, from

The Annie E. Casey Foundation. (2020, April 27). What is Kinship Care? Https://Www.Aecf.Org/Blog/What-Is-Kinship-Care. Retrieved January 12, 2021, from

University of Missouri. (2020). Kinship Navigation Program. Https://Education.Missouri.Edu/Navigators/Benefits-to-Kids/. Retrieved December 12, 2021, from

Helton, J. H. (2011). Children with behavioral, non-behavioral, and multiple disabilities, and the risk of out-of-home placement disruption. Child Abuse & Neglect, 35(11).