What is Foster Care?
Foster care provides a temporary, safe home for children in crisis.
Foster parents are part of the child's support, treatment, and
care programs. They are partners of the child's social worker,
teachers, and doctors. Being a foster / proctor or professional
parent is not a passive act of opening one's home and providing
food, clothing, and shelter. It is a proactive statement of nurturing,
advocacy, and love.
What are the requirements for becoming a Foster Parent?
foster parents and their babysitters must be BCI approved and
cleared by the Department of Human Services. This is done at
the expense of the agency and takes approximately 4 to 6 weeks
for clearance. Anyone living in the home who is 18 years of
age or older must also be fingerprinted and cleared. Please
note that all foster children, regardless of age, may not be
left unsupervised in the certified home without an exception
granted by community care licensing. The foster children can
only be supervised by a cleared adult 18 years of age or older
- All foster
parents are then required to complete a 25 hour foster parent
certification training class. This is conducted by the agency
at no expense to you. A training is offered once a month. The
certification class covers topics such as: foster parent responsibilities,
child abuse reporting, CPS and the court system, agency policies
and procedures, the types of children in the system, and what
kinds of behaviors to expect and how these behaviors are addressed.
- All foster
parents must be CPR and First Aid certified. Water safety certification
is required for those who have a pool and/or spa.
- All foster
parents must have a health screening (physical) from a doctor
to verify that there are no physical conditions preventing you
from becoming a foster parent. A negative TB test is also required.
- All foster
parents are required to submit a budget report demonstrating
adequate financial resources to maintain the family. The goal
here is to show that you are not in need of foster care dollars
to support your family.
- All foster
parents must have adequate space in their home or apartment.
Only 2 children can be in one room. A child 5 years of age or
older can only share a room with another child of the same sex.
A child 2 years of age or under can share a room with the foster
- The foster
home must meet licensing regulations. A list of requirements
is included in your application process. PYACS also has a staff
member available to help you through this process if necessary.
- If you
have cats or dogs in the home, a copy of their rabies vaccinations
What does PYACS look for when assessing families who want to become Foster Parents?
First, and most importantly, we are looking for families that are committed to helping children and that can love and nurture children without hesitation. We are also looking for families who are flexible, patient, understanding and able to work as team members in the best interest of children.
What are the characteristics of a successful Foster Family?
to feedback and direction
to ask for help when needed
to set clear boundaries and limits
not to personalize a child's behavior
What is PYACS' process for certification?
Once a person has decided that they want to be a certified foster/proctor
or professional parent, an individual meeting is scheduled between
you and the Program Coordinator. During this meeting you are interviewed
and asked a series of questions. The Program Coordinator will
provide you with the application packet needed to begin the certification
process. Your livescan/child abuse index check will immediately
be process through BCI verification. You will then receive confirmation
of the 24 hour foster parent certification classe once you have
completed the class, the application process, and your clearances
have been received, a homestudy will be conducted by the agency
Certified Social Worker. This is scheduled to take place at your
home for your convenience. Upon completion of the homestudy, a
home inspection will be scheduled. This is the final step before
you are licensed as a certified foster family. After licensing,
you are added to the agency's availabilty list pending placement
of your first foster child.
How long does it take to get certified?
The certification process depends on how quickly you complete and return your paperwork along with how quickly the livescan/child abuse index clearances come back.
Will I recieve financial assistance to care for the child?
Yes. You will receive a monthly stipend for each foster child
that is placed in your home. The amount of that stipend varies
depending on the age of the child. PYACS also provides an additional
clothing allotment for the child every Month.
Who pays for the child's medical care?
The State. Each child comes with Medicaid to meet all of their
medical and dental care needs.
Can I adopt the Foster Child?
Possibly. The goal of foster care is to reunify foster children
with their biological families. If this is not possible, the State
or County begins their search by asking the current foster family
if they are interested in adopting the child.
How can I find out more information on becoming a Foster Parent?
Call PIONEER YOUTH & ADULT COMMUNITY SERVICES
You may also submit your information via our Contact
Form and we will contact you.