INDIANAPOLIS — Children's Bureau and Families First announced a merger in 2020 in an effort to allow greater efficiency and impact. That merger went through in April 2021 and by the end of that year, they served more than 90,000 children and 50,000 families.
This year, they renamed as Firefly Children & Family Alliance.
By combining, they've been able to do even more to prevent child abuse by supporting and empowering families to reach self-sufficiency and stability. In addition, the merger allows them to become a destination with more of the expertise and resources families need to stay together.
"A family that might be having problems doesn't have to go to two or three different ... knock on two or three different doors to get the assistance that they need," said Huntington Bank's Joe Breen, who has served on the Children's Bureau's board for the last 10 years. "So that helps the families that we're serving, and it helps us be stronger in the services we provide."
Firefly CEO Tina Cloer says it's a hard but rewarding job serving families and children who need it most.
"Really, the idea was that we could remove barriers for families and serve adults who are struggling with individual issues, and children and families. All in one place," Cloer said.
She said the merger has led to amazing things happening.
"We see youth who age out of foster care, grow up and go to Ivy League schools. We see them grow up and become these amazing adults, despite the fact that they may have been in our system for, you know, half of their life or more," Cloer said.
To learn more about Firefly Children & Family Alliance, click here.