Our Families First

A Cuyahoga County Summer Initiative


We want Cuyahoga County families to stay together safely this summer. This resource guide has programs and services to help parents and kids before they face a crisis.


Family Crisis Resources

When things heat up this summer, there are steps to de-escalate conflict before child welfare must intervene.

DCFS has developed a Family Crisis Resource Card and webpage with tips and partners that can help.

If you are a parent or caregiver in the midst of a teen crisis, consider the following resources:

  • Risk of Harm to Self or Others Mobile Crisis Child Response Team
  • Youth committed a delinquent or criminal act Detention Center
  • Parents unable or unwilling to care for child
    Work with family, friends, or neighbors to locate a safe, temporary option. Perhaps a cooling off period.


TIPS: Before You Call or Drive to DCFS

  1. COOLING OFF PERIOD - Spend a few hours apart in a safe location, with relatives, or with friends to calm down and gather your thoughts.
  2. EXPLORE OPTIONS – Seek help from other safe adults for at least 24 hours to help calm the situation and address immediate concerns.
  3. BE AWARE – Bringing a child to DCFS will initiate an investigation, which could result in a possible neglect complaint and court involvement. 
  4. CONTACT – If there is no other option to keep the child and/or family safe, contact the 696-KIDS (5437) HOTLINE or local law enforcement. If it is a life-threatening emergency call 911.


Neighborhood Collaboratives

Neighborhood Collaboratives offer support within the communities and meet residents where they are.

We know families and children may struggle in the summer, but there are resources right in the neighborhood that can help, supporting the whole family so children can be safe at home.

Neighborhood Collaboratives provide or connect families to services, including:

  • Assistance with basic needs.
  • Early childhood/youth services.
  • Substance abuse services.
  • Parenting classes.
  • Counseling.
  • Housing referrals.
  • Employment assistance.
  • Education.
  • Health and wellness.


Family Success Network

Family Success Network at the West Side Catholic Center recognizes that parenting is hard.

They provide free family support services to prevent abuse and neglect and help families succeed.

Family Success Network services include:

  • Family coaching
  • Parenting tips
  • Money management
  • Financial assistance for family needs
  • Connection to additional community services


Residents do not have to call DCFS for a referral. Contact a neighborhood collab or the West Side Catholic Center for help directly.


County leaders and community partners launch the summer initiative.