Foster Parent Recruitment and Support
Letter from the Director
Upcoming Care2Foster Events:
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"Children born to another woman call me Mom. The magnitude of that tragedy and the depth of that privilege are not lost on me."
- Jodi Landers
Becoming a Foster Parent
A Foster Parent Has Open Arms
Foster parents volunteer their time, energy, and resources to care for and nurture children who have been removed from their parents and placed in foster care. Children often enter with nothing but a trash bag full of clothes and some basic belongings. They are upset, confused, and scared. Many have developmental delays or needs that require special accommodations, counseling, or therapies, and nearly all have experienced trauma. Foster parents welcome all of this in order to help children in a time of great need.
The Joy of Fostering
Fostering may become the greatest joy of your lifetime. It will open your eyes to new possibilities. It will transform you, your family, and your kids. You will rise to new heights and discover your potential from within. There will be challenges along the way, but those will equally be met with joy, satisfaction, and fulfillment.
Children in Foster Care
There are 437,000 children in U.S. foster care at any given time, and only 240,000 foster families. This means 197,000 foster families are needed across the country.
I never would have felt empowered enough to do what I have doing in my life now without Aspire.
When you know someone that cares, you do better in school and better in work. If you don't have that, it’s hard to have drive or be motivated. You think, “What’s the point in even trying?”
I went in [to Moms Matter®] worried and scared they were going to look at me like I’m horrible, but we got in there and it was comforting to know that I was in a place that I wouldn’t be looked down on. That made it a lot easier to be ME and to know that I am not a horrible person because everyone makes mistakes.
Losing my daughter to foster care was the hardest time of my life. I learned about Moms Matter® at a time that no one was helping me. I went to my first meeting, and have been going ever since. The women who attend are great, and help each other out. It helped me learn new things about myself. I am proud to say that my daughter is back with me now, thanks to Moms Matter®.
I LOVE Sib-Link® because it connects children with each other and promotes family bonding. Some children lack hope within to propel themselves forward with achieving life’s goals. I feel that Sib-Link® gives them this hope.
I can’t believe you’re here. I thought I lost you.
This was the best day ever! When can I see him again?
I foster to make a lifelong impact on children. Fostering has taught me patience, perseverance, and compassion.
I always say that foster parents are my favorite people. They will jump to help you at a moment’s notice. They don’t judge or condemn because they’ve been there too. They’ve had dark days and joyous days and everything in between.
Fostering is world-changing. It has flipped my narrow and privileged ideas about the world upside down a hundred times.
My favorite thing about fostering is the incredible joy these kids bring to our home.
If I could choose to do it all over again, I would have started sooner.
Just a little bit of encouragement goes so far and helps a child believe that with hard work they can accomplish anything.
Our (foster) daughter looked forward to it every week. Her teacher sent home notes saying she was more engaged at school and she started raising her hand at read-alouds. It made a world of difference for her in just two months!
As a teen in foster care, doing my homework was the last thing on my mind. I was in constant survival mode. Before I could think about my education, I had to survive in a strange classroom where I felt judged by everyone. I felt less than everyone around me.
I was 17 and we were all living in a group home. I left first. It hurt. I felt like that was harder being separate from my siblings than being in the system the whole time.
At sibling visits, I feel like we can be ourselves, and we didn’t get that from other people in foster care.
The whole experience of Sib-Link has been so positive. Everything in my life has had so much negativity, so this really stands out.
Sib-Link is VITAL in keeping siblings actively connected to each other during an intense and stressful time. Not only do my children get to see each other and reconnect, for a brief moment they get to forget their circumstances and just be kids together, not "foster kids."
Asking the Right Questions
As you consider fostering, there is a lot to process. You may have questions like, How can you love the children and then let them go?, How will fostering impact my children?, What if my spouse doesn’t share my desire to foster?, What age should I foster, What makes a good foster parent, or Can singles foster?
Care2Foster® helps individuals and families understand what fostering is really like so they can make an informed decision for their family. We also help families who are ready to navigate the early decisions like choosing standard or therapeutic foster care and selecting a licensing agency.
Join our Foster Parent Communities
We would like to expand our work to more states. If you are interested in bringing Care2Foster® to your state, please contact us.
We belong to each other. There's no such thing as other people's children."
- Glennon Doyle
The Foster Family Gap
One of the greatest needs in foster care right now are families willing to take in sibling groups and youth.
Could your family be one to meet that need?
Children enter foster care through no fault of their own. It may be due to neglect by their parents or caretakers. Sometimes addiction is involved. Physical or sexual abuse may have occurred.
When a child enters foster care, Social Services quickly looks for a family that can care for the child. A relative or family friend (referred to as "kinship") is often the best option. This rushed process is especially difficult on sibling groups because it usually results in separating siblings who are placed in foster care. Separation can be devastating for a child who was just removed from their parents.
Many families choose to foster younger children, but the need is much greater for youth (ages 12+). We encourage foster parents to do what they are comfortable with when considering the age range and preferences they set for their home. Setting reasonable boundaries around what your family can handle is important, but it is also encouraged to assess the most pressing needs in your area. The greatest need is often for families that will lovingly welcome sibling groups and teens. Many teens age out of foster care (usually between age 18 and 21) because there is not a family the child can stay with while they pursue their next steps in life. One caring adult can make a life-changing difference for a teenager.
The Licensing Process
Before any child in foster care is allowed to enter your home, you must complete the licensing process. The process is designed to be completed within 3 to 6 months, but it can take longer depending on how quickly the requirements are completed and the amount of time the licensing agency takes to process your request.
Children in Foster Care
262,000 children enter the foster care system each year. Nearly half of them are placed with foster parents for an average of 1-3 years, and nearly half of those foster parents stop fostering after the first year, often because they do not have the support they need.
Faith to Foster®
Not everyone can foster, but everyone can do something.
How can the church help to recruit more foster parents? Faith to Foster is a series to help your church and your community think deeply about vulnerable children. This six-session study explores the realities of fostering, with compelling video testimonials from foster families who have struggled and persevered.
Explore the call to foster in your church or small group today.
Learn how you can get more involved with foster care.
Contact one of our Foster Parent Experts to learn more about fostering!