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"Longing for Home" Video
"Matthew Harp Keynote Speech" Video
Nola and Jeff with their son Zach who lives in a nursing facility in Alabama.
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What makes a good home for a child?
Safe, stable place
Loving, committed family
Sense of inclusion, belonging
Space for privacy, play, learning
Children have choices
Children have freedom to explore
Children are surrounded by opportunities
Children receive affection, hugs, kisses
Children learn boundaries, values, morals
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The Children’s Freedom Initiative (CFI) is a collaborative effort to ensure that children who live in facilities are given the chance to live with permanent, loving families. We are a coalition of advocates dedicated to creating a Georgia in which no child resides in a facility.

The CFI is supported by the Georgia Developmental Disabilities Network, which receives funding from the Administration on Developmental Disabilities, and includes The Georgia Council on Developmental Disabilities (GCDD), the Institute on Human Development and Disability at the University of Georgia (IHDD), The Georgia Advocacy Office (GAO), and the Center for Leadership in Disability at Georgia State University (CLD).

The CFI continues to educate families about resources available for children so that they can remain at home or in the community, even when their home of origin is no longer an option. The CFI also continues to advocate for youth to transition from facilities into homes in the community.
Parent Journeys: From near to FullfillmentParent Journeys: From Fear to Fulfillment is a publication of the Institute on
Human Development & Disability based on the research of Dr. Zolinda Stoneman,
IHDD director.


Where Kids With Disabilities Live
The Department of Justice last month accused the state of Florida of unnecessarily placing disabled children in nursing homes. The DOJ determined that Florida put into place policies and procedures that limit the access for families to receive assistance at home. Thousands of other physically and mentally disabled children live in institutions across the country, often isolated from their families and decades younger than other patients. In many cases, the institutions are not equipped to suit their needs. Host Neal Conan talks with Donald Bailey, a disabled young adult who suffered a spinal injury in 2008, NPR's Joseph Shapiro, and Katie Chandler of the Children's Freedom Initiative about why many disabled children live in nursing homes, the unique challenges that presents and what some are doing to help more children get the care they need at home.

Listen to the NPR story here:



Joseph Shapiro from NPR reported on a story about Bylon Alexander, 24, and her untimely death.  The story ran on NPR’s All Things Considered.  The CFI is appreciative Mr. Shapiro wanted to run a story and that NPR recognized the importance of updating listeners about what happened to Bylon.