PromiseShip Celebrates 10 Year Anniversary Helping Over 20,000 Children and Families

Published: 2/1/2019

Since its inception in 2009, PromiseShip has helped transform the lives of nearly 20,000 children and families through comprehensive community-based services and a network of almost fifty local agencies. Last year alone, the organization, formerly known as Nebraska Families Collaborative, served more than 5,000 children and their families in Douglas and Sarpy counties. This year, PromiseShip celebrates its 10-year anniversary of a successful public-private partnership with the state of Nebraska.

Prior to 2009, Nebraska removed children from their families, placing them in foster care at a rate of more than double the national average. In response to this challenge, and to improve the wellbeing of Nebraska’s children, PromiseShip was formed by five local non-profits to form a public-private partnership with the state of Nebraska to provide community-based care for children and their families who are involved in the child welfare system.

Over 10 years, the organization has launched events that directly benefit children and families including its annual fundraising luncheon, foster and kinship family appreciation events, and bi-monthly open houses to provide information and resources for families working with the organization.

Enhancing its programs and services has also been essential to improving outcomes.

“As a trauma-informed organization, we understand the importance of keeping kids with their families whenever possible. When children need to leave home for safety reasons, it’s best for them to live with people who share a connection with them. Kinship caregivers are the unsung heroes of the American child welfare system,” said Dave Newell, president and CEO of PromiseShip.

Sixty percent of children receiving PromiseShip’s out-of-home services are living in kinship care, close to 28 percent above the national average.

PromiseShip also focuses on preventive care. Through its Prevention Services, formerly known as Aftercare Services, the organization helps to ensure families have resources to be successful and prevent re-entry into the child welfare system.

“Prevention is one area in which our entire community needs to invest in because long-term success of not only our children and families, but also our community, will only occur if we shift from a reactive to a proactive approach of helping families,” said Newell.

While PromiseShip’s primary focus remains the same today as when it was founded a decade ago – striving for all children to grow up in nurturing families – the organization continues to enhance its existing services and programs to strengthen Nebraska’s families and improve child well-being.