Families as Partners

At Children’s Minnesota, your input matters — whether your child is a patient in our clinic, or has spent time in the hospital. There are lots of ways that you can help make the Children’s experience better for patients and families like you.

To learn more or get involved as a patient family in any Families as Partners pathway described below, contact Tessa Billman, patient-family centered care coordinator, at 612-813-7407 or [email protected] Families interested in participating in Families as Partners pathways will be asked to submit an application form.

The Families as Partners program promotes, coordinates and supports family involvement throughout Children’s through the following pathways:


In the Family-to-Family Program, families use their experiences to mentor, provide encouragement, emotional support and non-medical information to other families in a variety of ways.

Jackie and family
Jackie and family

“When our son was admitted to the NICU we spent numerous weeks in his room, doing his cares and waiting for answers. Now that he is healthy, I reached out to Families as Partners so I could give back to the hospital that gave us so much. Being able to walk through the NICU and support other families who are going through a difficult time or seeing them on their way out the door has been so rewarding as a parent who has been there.” – Jackie, Family-to-Family program volunteer

Family Advocates

Family Advocates play a role in advocating on behalf of Children’s patients and on the behalf of the health of children. Families receive specific training and are informed of advocacy opportunities about public policy issues affecting the health of children.

Veronica and family in Washington, DC
Veronica and family in Washington, DC

“When our family participated in Family Advocacy Days in Washington D.C., we realized that our tiny daughter’s journey can be a catalyst for great change. We were so happy to offer her story as a lens through which our elected officials can take a closer look at the policy decisions they are making.” – Veronica, family advocate

Family Advisors

Family Advisors are designated family representatives involved in committees, design teams, unit advisory councils, experience teams, policy groups, family panels, family focus groups and family testimonial events.

Services.familesasparners.jodyandfamily“Participating on the Cystic Fibrosis Family Council (CFFC) has been a great opportunity as a parent to partner with my daughter’s care team to enhance our life experiences as well as experiences for other patients and families living with Cystic Fibrosis (CF). In an effort to support these families, the team developed a brochure, ‘Traveling with CF’, to help families prepare for and enjoy traveling.” – Jody, Cystic Fibrosis Family Council

The Family Advisory Council

The Family Advisory Council is a diverse group of families whose children have received care at one of Children’s facilities (inpatient and outpatient experiences). They work collaboratively with staff to promote and enhance patient and family-centered care and to improve the family and patient experiences. Learn more about the Family Advisory Council.  

The Youth Advisory Council

The Youth Advisory Council is a dedicated group of patients, ages 10 to 18, offering practical ideas on how to help Children’s focus even more closely on the special needs of children and teens. They eagerly voice their ideas and perspectives — from choices of food on the hospital menu to how they want adults at Children’s to relate to them. Learn more about the Youth Advisory Council.  



Hours, maps, and directions, plus team members and specialty services at each Children’s location.


Give to support the most amazing people on earth.


At Children’s, we know how important reliable information about conditions and illnesses is.


Use these fill-in-the-blank forms to help organize and track your child's medical information.