Kinship Navigator Program

Kinship navigator programs provide information, referral, and follow-up services to grandparents and other relatives raising children to link them to the benefits and services that they or the children need. Kinship navigator programs also collaborate with agencies and providers to meet the needs of relative-headed families and maintain a "kin-first culture".

The Definition and Requirements of Kinship Navigator Programs under Federal Law

Federal law defines kinship navigator programs as programs to assist kinship caregivers in learning about, finding, and using programs and services to meet the needs of the children they are raising and their own needs, and promote effective partnerships among public and private agencies to ensure kinship caregiver families are served. 42 U.S.C. 627.

Kinship navigator programs must meet the following requirements:

Under federal law, these programs may also establish and support a kinship care ombudsman with authority to intervene and help kinship caregivers access services; and support any other activities designed to assist kinship caregivers in obtaining benefits and services to improve their caregiving.