Through collaboration with the community, Mercer County Children and Youth Services will assess children and families that are at risk of child abuse or neglect. Mercer County Children and Youth Services will focus on family strengths to provide quality services in order to protect children and provide them with permanency, safety, and well-being. Mercer County Children and Youth Services will educate the community on what constitutes child abuse/neglect and how cultural and socio-economic factors impact children and families.
Based on State and Federal laws and the fundamental principle that all children have the right to grow and develop in a safe, nurturing and stable home with their own families whenever possible, the Agency provides the following services:
- Twenty-four hour availability to investigate reports of alleged child abuse, child neglect and child dependency and identification of families and children requiring general protective services.
- Services and assistance to families and children to enable children to remain safely within their own homes and to prevent family disruption and the need for child placement.
- Temporary safe care and supportive services in the most family-like setting possible for children in need of placement outside of the home.
- Stable permanent family life through adoption when the birth family cannot or does not provide permanent care for the child and post-adoptive services for the child and family as long as necessary.
- Community education, parent education and other preventive services in collaboration with others to reduce the number of children needing services of the public child welfare agency.
- Independent living skills to youth aged 14+ involved with the child welfare system to assist with the preparation and transition to adulthood.
- Foster care services including the recruitment of foster families residing in Mercer County with the intent of keeping dependent children closer to their families, school district, and community ties.
Mercer County Children and Youth Services complies with applicable Federal civil rights laws and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, age, disability, or sex.