Posted on: 23 May 2019
So you want to become a foster parent. You relish the idea of being able to parent children who have had a rough life and need someone stable to help them grow. Maybe you can't have children of your own or your brood is older and out of the house. Maybe you just want to do what you can to help other people, starting with children. Perhaps you're allured by the potential financial kickback you can get by taking in foster kids, especially when you're already wanting to do some good in your community. Maybe you're wanting to adopt a child someday, and starting with fostering a child will help you get your foot in the door.
Whatever your reasoning is for wanting to become a foster parent, your ambitions are noble. You have to go through a foster care licensing process, which can take some time and can be daunting at first. So you can be prepared for the process, here are things you should know about the licensing process to become a foster parent that you may not know about.
A Background Check
A background check is likely going to be part of your foster licensing program. Your foster sponsors or facility will want to know a few things about you, such as:
- Any criminal activity
- Arrests or warrants
- History of drug/domestic abuse
- Convictions of any kind
While having a dubious criminal record may not disqualify you from becoming a foster parent entirely, you may be held back from being able to do this if you have ever been convicted of a sexual act of violence, have a history of drug abuse, or have any other concerning criminal history that may be harmful to a child.
If you own any guns, you will be investigated to make sure they are registered to you, you can legally own them, and that you have them properly stored. You want to show you can safely foster children in your home, particularly those who have been exposed to gun and other violence in the past. You may have to go through an extended background check if you own guns.
Is your house clean and roomy? Do you have the means to have additional children in your home, as in having enough food, bedding, and someone available to take care of kids and supervise? You may get a visit from social workers as part of your foster care licensing program, so be prepared just in case this happens.
You may also have to take classes in order to become a foster parent, which is standard for many people. You may have to take continuing classes as foster care rules and regulations change, so be prepared for this as well.Share