Written by: Serenity Henderson March 19, 2021
Becoming a new foster parent can be a very exciting yet overwhelming process. We know nothing can fully prepare you for this journey like the actual experience. Here are a few things to expect with your first foster care placement.
Some kids are removed immediately and placed in the middle of the night. It’s not always during business hours. However upon where you reside, there might be a court date within three days of the child’s removal. The judge will at that point choose whether or not to send the child back home or to allow them to keep living in their encouraged foster home. You won’t necessarily need to be there however you should expect a call from your caseworker with the decision. Prepare to realize that its very possible for your child to be removed upon this three-day mark or even sooner.
Its possible upon arriving your foster child may lack clothing and other personal necessities like shampoo, underwear, a toothbrush etc… so stock up on a few extra items your child might need, depending on their age. Their bedroom and their bed should already be set up with fresh sheets before the child arrives. You also should just have a few healthy snacks on hand just until you get more familiar with what it it they like.
Expect for the child to possibly not show or for there to be delays
For all you new parents out there, there’s always a 50/50 chance that there will be some changes and the child might not show or have to be delayed. Sometimes they are in route to placement and the DSS social worker cancels the placement because they found a kinship family member to take the child.
Expect lots of phone calls, meetings and parental visits
Since a lot of these kids come from pretty bad backgrounds there’s a lot that would be put on to your plate as far as keeping up with the Childs health needs. You will likely have to schedule many appointments throughout the week. You will be in close touch with your caseworker, doctors, social worker etc… to ensure the child is staying healthy and everything is running smoothly. Court ordered visits are mandatory and you would unfortunately not really have a say on when or what time it would be, so just always be prepared. Ask your worker about them a couple of days after placement, or you may get a phone call that there will be a visit in a couple of hours.
Expect to go with the flow
Its normal to be overwhelmed for your first placement, its a lot of responsibility. So make sure you’re asking questions and getting the help you need if you don’t know something or you need help. Also try to make sure you have a community outside of your team, that can help ground you. It can be very easy to get lost in the whole process. You will be taken on an emotional roller coaster so know that its okay to feel all that you may feel and learn to go with the flow!
Each child needs and has the right to grow up protected from misuse and disregard, and caring foster parents offer kids support and dependability when they need it most. At Family Services of America, we spend a significant amount of time in personalizing plans for all children admitted into our services to get them ready for their next transition. We cooperate with our foster parents to provide services, including therapeutic foster care, adoption and outpatient Services. Quality care and services you can trust. Contact us today on how you can become a foster parent. https://www.familiesofusa.com