Press Release

State of Florida
Department of Children and Families
Rick Scott

David E. Wilkins

December 15, 2011
Terri Durdaller
SunCoast Region
Communications Director

DCF’s SunCoast Region Renews $135 Million Contract with Children’s Network of Southwest Florida
~ Contract oversees foster and adoptive related services in
Charlotte, Collier, Glades, Hendry and Lee Counties

FORT MYERS, FLA. – The Florida Department of Children and Families announced today that the Children’s Network of Southwest Florida, a local non-profit organization, will continue to oversee foster and adoption related services for five local counties in the SunCoast Region for five more years. The announcement comes with the award of a $135 million contract.

"We are confident that this decision is one that will produce the best outcomes for local children and families as well as Florida's taxpayers. The Children’s Network has remained committed to building a community of healthy families and has been an effective partner in recent years," said Mike Carroll, SunCoast Region Managing Director for the Department of Children and Families.

The current contract for the Children’s Network of Southwest Florida’s expires on June 30, 2012. The new contract will be effective July 1, 2012 through June 30, 2017.

"We are excited that Secretary Wilkins has chosen to negotiate with the Children's Network of SWFL for the CBC lead agency contract. We are honored to continue serving the children and families in our community and look forward to continued growth and success through our many partnerships," said Nadereh Salim, CEO of Children's Network.

Florida's Child Welfare System is managed in partnership through 20 community-based care (CBC) organizations across the state. Community-based care organizations are private, non-profit agencies with local ties to the community that they serve. These agencies contract directly with organizations that provide direct case management services, including adoption, family preservation, foster care, protective services and independent living services. Contracts are awarded through an intensive, competitive bidding process.