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Protective Factors - Approaches in Child Welfare

This issue brief provides a succinct overview of protective factors approaches to the prevention and treatment of child abuse and neglect.

It is designed to help policymakers, administrators, child welfare and related professionals, service providers, advocates, and other interested individuals understand the concepts of risk and protective factors in families and communities and learn ways in which building protective factors can help to lessen risks for child abuse and neglect.


  • What are risk and protective factors?
  • Why is a protective factors approach important?
  • Using protective factors in child maltreatment
  • Mapping connections across protective factors approaches
  • Individual protective factors
  • Relational protective factors
  • Societal or community protective factors
  • Putting protective factors into practice

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Fostering Success Michigan is a program of Educate Tomorrow that aims to increase access and success in higher education and post-college careers for youth with experience in foster care. Learn how you can contribute to building a holistic network that insulates (i.e., strengthens protective factors and reduces risks) the education to career "pipeline." 

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