Originally published 2019 and updated for payment rate structure July 2021 and daycare voucher policy (March 2022)
Money is always a touchy subject. Nobody wants to ask, but everyone wants to know- “do foster parents get paid?” It’s taboo because we don’t want others to think that we are getting into fostering for the money (hint: most people are not!) But at the same time, we have to be realistic that for many families, money is a concern.
The need for foster parents is great! We need to address the perceived boundaries to fostering so that more families may feel confident to step up to the plate. So if you’ve ever wondered “do foster parents get paid” or “how much do foster parents get paid,” we’re going to answer your questions outright.
South Carolina foster parents do receive a monthly stipend for each child that is in their home called a “board payment.” Fostering takes a lot of work. The stipend or board payment is paid to a family to cover essentials for the children in their care. This money is expected to help cover some of the costs of essentials like food, clothing, daycare, car seats, beds, and any extras like after-school activities. There are additional financial supports in place for foster families which we will talk about here as well.
Maybe you’ve heard that foster parents are doing it “for the money” and now you want to know how much they make. Or maybe you are considering stepping into foster care yourself and are curious if it will be doable for your family’s current budget.
Let’s talk dollars! In July 2021, South Carolina Department of Social Services announced updates to the regular foster home board rates. The daily board rate is the amount that a foster family is paid per day that a foster child is placed in their home. This is typically paid by a South Carolina ePay Mastercard or by direct deposit to your bank account once a month. If you are licensed through a private agency (CPA) you may receive your board payment as a paper check. The payment type may vary by agency and/or preference.
These are the current board rates for regular foster homes in South Carolina as of July 1, 2021:
Regular Foster Care Board Payment, based on child’s age:
If you are considering becoming a foster parent, you shouldn’t have to feel nervous about asking for more information. You can always be upfront with your case worker and licensing agency. We encourage you to ask questions and express your concerns; they’ve probably heard it all before.
No one will judge you for not having all the answers or being confused about what foster care is like. Some things you just have to learn along the way, but some things you can be prepared for- like knowing the financial implications of stepping into foster care. It shouldn’t be a secret!
Ready to get started? Learn more about becoming an SC foster parent.
Still have some questions? Trying to process your doubts? We want to help. Contact Care2Foster for more information about foster care and how you can take next steps.
Want to connect with other current and prospective South Carolina foster parents? In the SHAREfostering community, you can get connected, access resources, and ask questions. No judgement!