The SAFE Alliance aims to create a safe community for all in Greater Austin.
The SAFE Alliance
Julia Spann, CEO
Rooted in its mission of providing a safe community for all, The SAFE Alliance works to build trust and provide connections for children in foster and adoptive homes throughout Austin.
Building Trust in Greater Austin
Trust is important to a child’s quality of life and ongoing emotional development. For children living in foster and adoptive homes, the right home provides the opportunity to develop trust, build connections with others, gain self-esteem, and learn valuable life skills.
The SAFE Alliance is a nonprofit organization dedicated to creating a trusting and safe community for everyone in Central Texas, and offers comprehensive support for survivors of abuse and violence, as well as prevention and education programs.
Through its foster and adopt program, The SAFE Alliance trains and mentors families who can welcome a child into their home – providing a place for healing, safety, and belonging to children temporarily in foster care or more permanently through adoption.
The SAFE Alliance Approach
The SAFE Alliance team believes that a foster and adoptive parent’s most important role is to connect emotionally with the child, so they can heal. To ensure families feel equipped to make these connections, The SAFE Alliance embodies a trauma-informed approach – which helps families understand how trauma can influence children’s behavior and needs to help them build a trusting relationship. The goal is to support placements that last, where the child feels safe with the foster or adoptive parent.
The SAFE Alliance also offers its foster and adoptive families with:
- Pre-service and ongoing training
- 24-hour on-call staff support
- Home visits and case management services
- In-kind support for activities, school supplies, and more
- Therapy for children and families
- Parent coaching
- Assistance locating respite care
- Help accessing community resources
- Compassion and understanding
In addition to foster and adoptive care through placement, The SAFE Alliance also offers kinship care support, which means children can be placed with family or someone they already have a relationship with. When children are placed in kinship care, they’re often able to stay connected to their birth family, continue family traditions, and remain in touch with their community.
“Fostering and adopting takes humility and perseverance. You have to be able to ask for support.”Carol Strychalski Foster/Adoptive Parent & Compliance Manager at The SAFE Alliance
Continuous Support for the Community
In addition to the goals of its foster and adoptive programs, The SAFE Alliance’s comprehensive mission is to support anyone affected by violence or neglect in Greater Austin. The SAFE Alliance’s range of programs includes counseling, therapy, parent education, case management, housing, and aging out support for youth in foster care.
“I’ve seen the deep impact good foster and adoptive families can have on a child’s life,” Carol Strychalski reflects, drawing from her 20+ years as a foster and adopt professional, first in Ohio and then at SAFE Alliance. After moving to Austin, she became a foster parent herself. “I knew we had room in our family to do that.” She and her husband went through the process, started fostering two siblings, and finalized the adoption two years later. Even though she had been working with foster children for two decades, the experience deepened her understanding of the experience of the foster and adoptive parents she supports.