MELBOURNE, FL – July 9, 2012 – Brevard County’s community based care agency tasked with protecting children and providing services to those who have suffered abuse and neglect ranks among the best in a state that is ranked fourth best in the nation for child welfare.  Brevard Family Partnership ranks fourth among twenty CBC agencies in the most recent scorecard issued by the Florida Department of Children and Families.

Rankings of community based care agencies are based on several areas directly related to children who are served, including children reunified with their families within twelve months of entering the child welfare system; the number of children enrolled in school; the percentage receiving necessary medical and dental care; and, the ratio of children adopted into “forever homes” who have been in out-of-home (foster) care more than twelve months.

“This ranking is a testament to our community and to our community partners, who each day put the welfare of children first and commit themselves to ensuring that those who have suffered abuse receive the best care we can provide,” said BFP’s CEO, Dr. Patricia Nellius. “This also reinforces what we have said since our inception: local, community based care is the best model when it comes to protecting children and strengthening families.”

Florida is ranked fourth in the nation by the Foundation for Government Accountability’s 2012 “Right for Kids” ranking for the level of care and services it provides to its most vulnerable children. Key findings in this year’s Right For Kids ranking are:

1. Florida is one of only 11 states that have a 24-hour rapid response to investigate claims of abuse or neglect.
2. Florida is one of only 12 states that visit the vast majority of foster kids monthly.
3. Florida is one of only 9 states that quickly and safely return foster children home to their biological families, when possible. In Florida it takes fewer than 12 months, on average, to reunify families with an 85 percent success rate.
4. Florida is one of only 9 states that ensure short and stable stays in foster care as a general practice. In Florida foster children remain in care for a year or less and do not experience the trauma of being moved to multiple foster homes.
5. Since the Community-Based Care system was fully implemented throughout the state in 2006, Florida has moved up 12 spots in the rankings.

The report also noted that if more states in the country followed the model set by Florida and other top-performing states, there would be 72,000 fewer children in foster care and 19,000 more adoptions from foster care each year.  The full report can be viewed at