This first step to becoming foster parents is to attend an orientation. Most states throughout the United States provide informational orientations to individuals who are considering becoming foster parents.
In most cases, these information sessions are free, and an individual will maintain no obligation for attending the assembly. Some states host these events once every month, and they will usually last for a few hours in order to ensure that all relevant concerns are addressed.
Foster care orientations will provide potential foster parents with the opportunity to ask questions and receive information about becoming foster parents. Representatives from various agencies and child protective services will be available in order to answer people’s questions. Many of these orientations will also incorporate current foster parents, so that individuals who are considering fostering a child will be able to communicate with people who have already experienced the stresses and the rewards of undertaking this responsibility.
These information sessions will provide individuals with information about the eligibility requirements for becoming foster parents, the application process, training programs, and the home study. After a family attends an orientation, they may continue on their journey to becoming foster parents by completing an application for licensing.
There are various components of the applications process that individuals must complete when becoming foster parents. Potential foster parents will receive an application information packet which will detail the process of becoming licensed to foster a child. Once they review the information packet, they will be required to complete an application form. This form will include personal information about the potential foster parents, as well as information about their family.
They will need to indicate whether or not they maintain a preference of the gender and the age of the child to whom they will be care. They will also be required to denote whether or not they would be willing to care for multiple children or sibling groups. Some applications will inquire as to whether or not potential foster parents would care for a child with special needs. In most cases, individuals who are applying to foster a child will have to provide agencies with financial information, in order to guarantee that they have the financial stability to care for a child.
The financial information is utilized in order to ensure that foster parents are not relying on a monthly subsidy check and adoption assistance as a form of income. Potential foster parents will be required to submit to a criminal record check and to complete any associated paper work. As part of the application package, an individual may be required to obtain a physical examination from their physician and provide the child protective services agency with a copy of their medical records.
This will ensure that the individual is not suffering from severe illness or disease that would inhibit their ability to adequately care for a child. Prospective foster parents will also be required to acquire character references that will help to confirm that they are suited to protect and care for a child. These references can usually be from employers, family members, and friends. The application process for becoming foster parents is long and taxing. However, the outcome is well worth the wait and the work.