There are over 5,000 children in foster care in Philadelphia. Many of them come from abuse or neglect and need someone to love them. Perhaps you are the one. If so, you may want to consider becoming a foster parent. Here are some things you need to know about foster care in Philadelphia.
1. You are part of a team. As a resource parent, you are a key member of the permanency team. Your job is to provide information to the team to help them decide what is best for the child. You ensure that the child is safe and cared for. You are a role model and mentor to the biological parents of the child. Your goal is to help the child reunite with his or her parents.
2. There are some requirements to be a foster parent. A foster parent can be anyone that is at least 21 years old. You must pass a criminal background check, child abuse and FBI clearances. You must be able to physically care for a child of any age. The most important requirement is that you must have a place for the child to sleep in your home.
3. In order to become a foster parent, you must first select a foster care agency that you feel comfortable with and call them to begin the process. After you have selected the agency you are going to work with, you will begin the certification process which will take approximately three to six months to complete. During this process, you will fill out an application, get a physical completed by your doctor, attend an orientation, complete six hours of training, pass a criminal background check and get a home study completed by a licensed social worker.
There are so many things to think about when you become a foster parent. You may seem overwhelmed, but once you get your certification and get your first placement, it is definitely worth the work.
For more information about becoming involved in foster care in Philadelphia, click here.