The foster parent application process includes the following general steps:
If you are interested in becoming a foster parent, please contact our office either by phone or email. You may download an application form and mail the completed and signed form to our office.
Once your form has been received and reviewed, a Children First recruitment officer will contact you and ask you a series of questions to assess your qualifications to be a foster parent.
Following a positive qualifications assessment, the recruitment officer will advise you when the next awareness session will be held. You have the option of attending a formal presentation, or of having a representative visit you in your home.
After the foster care awareness session, the foster care screening and intake worker will interview you and discuss any questions you may have. This interview will ensure that you meet the basic eligibility requirements.
Every potential caregiver will be required to undergo a criminal record check, intervention (child welfare) record check, and foster care record check.
You will be asked to provide personal references, medical references, work references (for the primary income provider), and information about your interest in becoming a foster parent.
Training consists of eight three-hour modules (24 hours total) that address a variety of topics, including child development, the special needs of children in care, duties and responsibilities of foster parents, and supports provided to foster parents. Training also explores your motivation for fostering and whether the demands made upon a foster family are compatible with your family’s values and goals. All foster parents must complete this training before they can be approved. The scheduling of the training varies, with options to attend Saturday or evening sessions.
You will be asked to complete a foster care home self-assessment report. The assessment worker will then arrange several appointments to meet with you and your family, depending on family size and complexity. These meetings will include a discussion of your family’s history, relationships, and significant events, and how your family works and communicates together. Discussions will focus on whether or not the demands of fostering, with regional expectations, will match your family’s values and dynamics.
At the conclusion of the home study, you and your assessment worker will jointly decide whether the fostering journey is right for your family, and whether you and the agency can have a positive working relationship.