Foster Parent FAQs
In our foster care programs, caring foster parents provide loving support in family homes. We call them Mentors because they do so much more than provide a home to a child in need. They help children heal, grow and learn, helping them have bright futures.
By opening your home, you’ll have the chance to make a difference in their life. And we’ll be with you every step of the way.
Becoming a foster parent is a big decision. We know you have questions.
Here are answers to some commonly asked questions about becoming a foster parent. If your question isn’t answered below, you can fill out this form to contact us.
At Sevita, we call our foster parents Mentors. That’s because when you welcome a child into your home, you become an advocate, a teacher, and family. You’ll help a child reach their full potential by providing the care and support they need to thrive. Mentors are the heart of our foster care programs.
You’ll nurture, support, and love the child in your care. And you’ll provide care tailored to meet their specific needs.
Before you welcome a child into your home, our matching process helps find the best fit between child and Mentor. We’ll consider any preferences you may have and the type of care you can and want to provide.
Our Mentors come from many different backgrounds. They may be stay-at-home moms and dads, single people, empty-nesters, or working professionals. They represent every gender, orientation, ethnicity, and religion. One thing our Mentor foster parents have in common is their commitment to helping children thrive.
Mentors must be at least 21 years of age.
You will receive a monthly stipend to help cover the costs that come with caring for a child. The amount depends on what state you live in and the level of care the child needs.
The first step is to complete our form. A team member from your local Sevita office will answer any questions you have. The process can vary from state to state, but once you get started it typically takes about 8 to 12 weeks.
You’ll be responsible for basic home care and related responsibilities for the child in your care. That includes:
- Giving them a safe place to live, play, and grow
- Making nutritious meals
- Taking them to school, activities, or appointments
- Supervision appropriate to the child’s age and care needs
You’ll have an experienced and caring coordinator assigned to you and the child in your care. Your dedicated coordinator will:
- Visit your home and the child regularly.
- Review the child’s care plan and discuss whether it is meeting their needs.
- Oversee the child’s growth and progress toward goals.
- Provide case management.
Every child has a unique story. As a foster parent, you can make it a better one. We serve children of all ages and from all walks of life. Some might have behavioral challenges or medical needs. Some have experienced abuse or neglect. It isn’t always easy. It’s challenging but rewarding to help a child in need.
The matching process might take a few weeks or several months. We take the time to get to know each Mentor with the hope that each match we make is the right one.
It’s a fact of life. Kids have good days, and they have bad days, just like adults. Children in foster care may show behaviors they’ve learned from living in tough situations. With your support and love, these behaviors can decrease over time.
State regulations govern the number of children you can foster. Typically, our Mentors care for one or two children at a time. You can learn more about your state’s requirements by filling out our form.
Your state will also have specific rules about whether or not you can work outside the home. Some states require that foster parents have a separate source of income, like a job, retirement, or social security. In other states, you must be a stay-at-home parent. Learn more about your state’s requirements. Fill out our form to learn more.
Most moms and dads make sure their kids have a safe way to get to school, activities, and appointments. So, we ask our Mentors to be responsible for transportation.
You will need to fill basic needs. The monthly stipend you receive will help cover the cost for things like:
- Bedroom furniture and bedding
- Nutritious meals and snacks
- Personal care supplies (shampoo, soap, toothpaste, etc.)
The amount varies by state and the care needs of the child.
Every person has the right to live well.
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