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Our "families" come in all shapes and sizes. Some are single adults; some are two, with kids or no kids of their own. Some are large families in which everyone helps out.
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Kids are expensive to care for. We provide financial support for foster families, the amount depending on the age and needs of the particular child. We also cover their medical costs. You won't get rich, but it should more than cover your expenses. Helping a person in need is a challenge - one that could change your life as well as the life of a child or an adult in your care.
Apartments, town homes, single-family homes - all are appropriate locations for foster care or adopted children. Some foster children can share a bedroom with a same gender child close in age. They need to have their own beds; some need their own rooms. Most kids come with few possessions, but will need a dresser drawer and a bit of closet space. If they come to you without adequate clothing for the season, the children's social worker will assist in obtaining extra funds.
We do not pay for any alterations needed to your house to meet safety and fire codes, but most homes need few if any changes. Our staff will discuss any housing concerns with you before you make any commitment.
Most of the children needing foster or adoptive families are in the social services system due to past abuse or neglect. They have been traumatized. Some are doing pretty well emotionally and are of normal intellect. Others are really hurting, and may show that in their behavior.
Kids, like adults, can be depressed, anxious, fearful, and angry. Some have medical or developmental problems. Many have delayed social skills or special school needs. You'll work closely with social services, the school, therapists and other professionals, and, in many cases, with the child's extended family.
Most kids who go into foster care are quickly reunited with their parents or extended family. Some foster families specialize in working with short-term cases. Other families prefer long-term foster care, or may be interested only in adoption. We often don't know at the time of a placement how long it will be.
Whenever possible, we try to keep siblings together. They are often each other's best support.