Foster Care Placement Services
Traditional Foster Care is for children who have temporarily been removed from their home because of abuse or neglect. In some cases, it is necessary to immediately remove a child from the home. This often results in the child being traumatized and needing help and support to cope with the experience. Foster home placements can be for a short or extended period of time. While a child is in foster care, every effort is made to improve the family situation so the child can, if possible, safely return home.
Specialized Medical/Therapeutic Care
Children who have been intensely traumatized by their previous families often require specialized medical and therapeutic care to overcome the physical harm and emotional damage they have suffered.
This service offers short-term care providing a much-needed break for foster parents.
Steps to Becoming a Foster Parent
If you've wondered if you have what it takes to become a foster parent, now is the perfect time to find out. From start to finish, the process normally takes 3 to 9 months. In less than a year, you can give a child a home and hope for a better future.
Make the Call
Choose the phone number for your county from the list below. When you call, you will be referred to a specialist who will walk you through a general screening and mail a packet of information for your review.
The specialist will contact you and ask questions about different aspects of your life such as home size, income, and children already in the home. During this screening you will learn more about what it means to be a foster or adoptive parent, have an opportunity to ask questions, and decide whether or not this opportunity is right for you.
Begin Licensing Process
If you and your specialist agree that foster parenting is an option for you and your family, then the licensing process will begin. This careful process will include the following components and result in a Homestudy, which is a written document that captures important information about your family. The licensing process includes training, home inspection, income assessment, health assessment, and background checks.
You will be required to attend MAPP (Model Approach to Partnerships in Parenting) training. Classes are offered at convenient times to meet diverse schedules. MAPP is designed to prepare potential foster and adoptive parents for their new role by providing information about children's feelings regarding their birth families, the realities of separation and attachment, the impact of incorporating a new child into day-to-day family life, and how to parent children who have been abused, neglected or abandoned.
Your home will be checked for sanitation, health, fire prevention, and general safety.
While a monthly board rate is provided for the child's basic needs, a foster parent cannot be dependent on these payments to care for a foster child. Adequate income is determined on a case-by-case basis.
Your physical and mental health will be evaluated to determine that you are physically and emotionally capable of fostering a child.
Personal and employment reference checks will be conducted. Child abuse registry checks and fingerprint checks by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement and the FBI will be conducted on all household members 18 years of age or older.
If the homestudy determines that you and your home are suitable for a foster child, then licensure will generally be awarded as quickly as possible. A child may be placed in your home immediately after you receive your license.
If for some reason foster parenting isn't right for you, there are numerous other ways to contribute through volunteer work or contributions. Your specialist will present these opportunities to you at the appropriate time.
Children's Home Society provides Foster Home Management services in circuit 2. This includes licensing of foster homes, MAPP training and ongoing foster parent support. Our theme is "Local Homes for Local Kids".
Life Management Center provides Foster Home Management services in circuit 14. This includes licensing of foster homes, MAPP training and ongoing foster parent support. Call our Foster and Adoption Services Hotline for more information- (850) 522-4489 or toll free (866) 769-9481
These documents support quality parenting and will assist in understanding our system of care and our committment to develop and support excellent caregivers.