Foster Care for Children
You can make a difference. Foster care is about helping children and families in need. Unfortunately, instances of neglect or abuse may result in children being removed from a family home. As a foster care provider, you will help children learn there are caring, stable, and reliable adults there for them. In time, children in your care will learn that times may be tough but you care and are willing to help. The county agency will work to find children a temporary home with a foster family and, in some cases, a permanent home with an adopted family.
Foster parenting is a commitment to help children and their families through a specifically difficult period by providing consideration, understanding, and guidance to the children and their parents. Foster homes may refuse a particular placement if they feel the placement is inappropriate for them or for meeting the specific needs of the child.
Foster parents may be able to adopt children in care; however, the goal of foster care is reunification with the children's family as soon as possible. Any consideration of adoption is after all efforts at returning the children home or placing the children with relatives are exhausted. Specific policies regarding foster parents as an adoptive resource are available from your child placement agency.
Foster Care for Adults
Adults may be placed in foster care if they cannot live alone safely because of disabilities or poor health. The foster care program provides and alternative for adults who need daily help but want to live in a family setting rather than a nursing home or other facility. The adult foster care provider provides meals, companionship, personal care assistance, and 24-hour supervision. The provider may be individuals, couples, or larger families.
Become A Foster Parent
You can help a person of any age. A person needs a nourishing stable environment in which to live regardless of his or her age - siblings, teens, young mothers and infants, and adults. There is a need of foster care providers for every age group. In fact, most children in need of foster care are older or a member of a sibling group.
Perhaps you aren’t able to provide foster care on a full-time basis for a long period of time. That doesn’t mean you can’t help. There are opportunities for emergency, short-term, weekend, and long-term care.
Contact Kathy VanOtterloo at (507) 357-8110 for more information on becoming a licensed foster parent. After talking to the licensor and assessing your family situation and life style, you’ll be able to determine how you can help. There are several types of ways to provide foster care:
- Foster families - provide emergency or short-term care until a child can be safely reunified with a parent or until a permanency plan is put into action.
- Permanent resource families - provide care for a child while reunification with their family is actively pursued and commit to the possibility of adoption if reunification cannot take place.
- Adoptive families - provide care and nurturing to a child on a permanent basis. Adoptive families commit legally to raise children as they would a child born to them.
- Respite Care Providers - provide consistent short term care, maybe 1 or 2 weekends a month, to a child or children either from another foster home or from the parental home.
You’ll be there on a daily basis to show you care. Le Sueur County will be there to provide you support and training every step of the way - from initial orientation to ongoing support and training. Foster parents do receive some financial support – a monthly reimbursement to cover basic room/board, clothing expenses, spending allowance, transportation, and activites, plus coverage for medical and dental expenses. Foster parents are not paid for their services. It’s about making a difference, one day at a time.