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An Introduction to Foster Care
An overview of what foster care means to Sevita, how to apply, who is eligible and what the foster care process looks like.
Foster care at Sevita
With over 400,000 children and teens in foster care, there is a constant need for people willing to provide the loving family home they need to thrive. We believe foster parents do more than offer up their homes. We know they support children as they grow, learn, and heal, helping them move towards a bright future.
There’s a lot to consider before becoming a foster parent. If you’re interested in fostering through Sevita, keep reading for some information about our different foster programs and how you can get involved.
Why become a foster parent?
Our goal is to help foster parents create loving and nurturing homes where children with trauma, medical needs, or behavioral challenges can heal and grow. Our foster parents help children build new skills, work through challenges, and live their best lives.
As part of our programs, we offer a range of training and support. We help all our foster parents;
- Develop skills through education to help them be effective foster parents
- Benefit from home visits where we can offer our expert insights
- Connect with other foster parents in their area so they can all learn and grow together
- Access expert support from providers and medical professionals to answer questions
Types of Foster Care
Therapeutic foster care
Our therapeutic foster care programs are based on our trauma-informed clinical model, which emphasizes positive family relationships. The goal is to help children feel supported and gives them a chance to heal from past behavioral, emotional, or other traumas.
Sometimes, a child in your extended family may suddenly need foster care. We develop ways to help children heal and grow while allowing them to stay with extended family in loving homes.
Medically complex care
At Sevita, we also have programs to support children living with illnesses, physical and developmental disabilities, and a range of other challenges. For foster parents, staff are available 24/7 for on-call support to answer any questions you have about managing your child’s needs so they can experience the joys of childhood.
Starting the Process
The process of becoming a foster parent involves several steps. With our support and expertise, we can help you become a foster parent so you can impact the life of a child for the better.
At a minimum, all foster parents must be at least 21 years old. In some states, the age requirement may be 25 and older. If you meet the age requirements in your state, the process of becoming a foster parent involves the following steps:
- Complete an application
- Undergo a background check
- Complete preservice skill development and home study
- Receive licensure and, in some cases, approval from your state
After receiving licensure, we guide all potential foster parents through an extensive matching process. During the matching process, a recruiter will contact you and verify that you meet all the requirements necessary to foster within your specific location. Then, we’ll discuss your preferences and the care you are able to provide to a child. Our goal is to consider your needs and lifestyle as well as the needs of the child to make sure everyone is able to thrive together.
How long does the process take?
The matching process varies from state to state, but usually, it takes 8 to 12 weeks from application.
Ready to take the first step in becoming a foster parent? Let’s get in touch!
First, complete the form below with some information about yourself. Then, a team member from your local Sevita office will be in touch to answer any questions you have.