WHAT IS FOSTER CARE?
Foster Care is a temporary arrangement in which adults provide for the care of a child or children whose birth parent is unable to care for them. It is where children go when their parents cannot, for a variety of reasons, care for them.
Foster care can be informal or arranged through the courts or a social service agency. The goal for a child in the foster care system is usually reunification with the birth family, if possible.
WHAT ARE THE REQUIREMENTS FOR BEING A FOSTER CARE PARENT?
- Applicants must be 21 years of age.
- Applicants may be single or married.
- Applicants may live in own apartment or house.
- Applicants are fingerprinted for a criminal background check.
- Every member of the household 18 years or older must be fingerprinted for a criminal background check.
- Applicants must be able to meet family’s financial obligations.
- Applicants are requested to submit an initial medical examination and reexamination every two years for every member of the household to determine their physical and emotional ability to care for children.
- Applicants are requested to provide three references regarding their parenting ability.
- Applicants are required to complete a minimum of 27 hours of pre-service education.
- The applicant’s home will be inspected by personnel from the health department for safety and sanitation, and by the fire department.
- A minimum of two visits to the applicant’s home is completed by the approval worker to discuss the types of children most appropriate for them, the proposed sleeping arrangements and the family lifestyle.
- A child support clearance must be conducted.
- Applicant must agree not to use physical punishment.
WILL I BE ABLE TO HAVE VISITS WITH MY CHILDREN IF THEY ARE IN FOSTER CARE?
Yes. Visitation with parents is an important part of the foster parent role, unless the court has determined it is the child’s best interest to have no contact. Remaining in contact with your child or children will be an important part of family reunification. Contact could be letters, calls, conference calls for school conferences, as well as visitation