Become a Foster Parent
When you become a foster parent, you provide a safe, loving home to a child whose family is in crisis. This likely means that the child has experienced a traumatic or otherwise unsuitable home situation, and needs more than anything to feel safe, supported, and loved at home. By opening your home to a child or sibling group in need, you show that child that they are cared for and give them a much needed sense of stability in a tumultuous time.
If you are interested in becoming a foster parent, please find out if the role is right for you by reading below. To begin the process of accepting a child into your home, please contact the LSG location nearest you or fill out the inquiry form below.
The Foster Parent’s Role
LSG foster families provide stable, nurturing homes with attention to the children’s individual medical, emotional, educational, and social needs. Returning the child to his or her birth family is always the stated permanency goal; however, sometimes reunification is not possible. Foster parents must help prepare the child for either eventuality.
When a child becomes available for adoption, foster parents may ask to be considered as the adoptive home for the child and often are, in fact, selected to fill this role. LSG assists in that process. If the child leaves the foster home to be reunited with the birth family or to go to a new adoptive home, LSG supports the foster family in coping with the emotions associated with the departure of the child. Soon, most families are ready to welcome another child in need.
Becoming a Foster Parent
LSG offers comprehensive training and preparation for caring families in three stages:
- Orientation, which covers detailed information about who we are, what we do, and how we work. We also discuss State and Agency policies regarding regulatory and safety issues.
- Pre-service trainings, which are free of charge.
- A thorough assessment of the family and home, in order to understand motivations, strengths and needs. This assessment follows all State regulatory requirements for the approval of foster homes. Areas of focus include medical clearance, criminal record checks, personal references, Child Protective Services checks, and drug screening.
Please see our calendar for course descriptions and our schedule of trainings.
Each time a child is referred to LSG, we begin looking for the best home possible for the child. Once we have identified an appropriate home, we contact the prospective foster parents and discuss the basics of the child’s situation. If the prospective family is interested, we arrange for a formal meeting where the child’s history and records are reviewed by the family and LSG staff. The prospective foster parents and LSG staff then make a mutual decision as to whether the proposed placement is a good “match.”
When a child is placed in an LSG foster home, the family receives:
- A per diem payment to cover the cost of caring for the child and to compensate for the time and attention given to the child.
- Clothing allowances and funds for other needs may also be available.
- The children’s medical, dental, and other health services are paid for by Medicaid.
- Case Management services are provided at no cost to the foster parents. We wish to see our foster parents receive appropriate compensation for their efforts.