Inquiries to Ask When Accepting a Foster Placement

This article was originally published by Adopt US Kids on December 7th, 2020. You can find the original article here.

Seasoned foster and adoptive parents will tell you that one key to a successful internship is having the information you need to first decide whether a child is a good fit for your family, and if so, the experience for To make you and the child positive.

We asked our Facebook community and social workers who train and support foster parents what questions they would ask when bringing a child into your family.

The first thing we learned is that the answer to this question depends heavily on whether a child has just started foster care or is changing internship.

Questions to ask the first time a child has been placed in foster care

It is 7:00 p.m. and you get the call from your clerk: “We have just removed two children from a house after a police call. Can you take it “

Put yourself in the shoes of the worker for a moment. This is not a family that has ever come into contact with child protection services. Parents are unable to share many details about the children. You may have a lot of questions, but the rep will not have answers to many questions for at least 24 or 48 hours. Below are some questions you might ask.

How old and gender-specific are the child or children?

You can use this information to first determine whether it is suitable for your family and then plan a sleep situation.

Why do they come into care?

While you may not know much about a child for the first day or two, knowing why they were cared for can help you understand the things they may be saying or doing.

For this reason, and for the safety of other children in the home, the workers we spoke to said it was their practice to notify foster parents if the child may have experienced sexual abuse. If your employee doesn’t address this, you should be comfortable asking about it.

Are there siblings who are also looked after?

While staff don’t have the details at this point, whether or not the children have siblings can give you an idea of ​​possible visiting plans.

Will they change school districts when they are placed with me?

This gives you an idea of ​​the immediate time commitment as it can sometimes take a day or two for children to be enrolled in a new school.

What is your mobile phone number – and what is that of your manager?

Last but not least in importance!

Questions to ask if this is not a child’s first internship

When a child returns to care or is transferred from a previous internship, there are tons of questions to ask their employee. Here are some who recommend workers and other families.

How do they understand the reason they are in care?

One mother said, “I wish I had asked if our son now knew everything that was in his history file that we received. He turned 17 and of course I assumed he knew what his files were. “

Do you have allergies – also to animals?

Several families emphasized the importance of this question for obvious reasons! In addition to allergy problems, parents and workers stress the importance of asking whether a child is comfortable and well with animals.

What are their favorite foods – likes and dislikes? Are you vegetarian?

Preparing a child’s favorite meal can make the transition to a new home easier.

What are your upcoming and routine appointments? What is their visiting schedule for born family members – and where do they live?

One mother told us that in conversations with child laborers she made her limits clear from the start: “Know that I work full-time and cannot transport during the day. If that’s necessary, I’m not the place, otherwise you’ll have to arrange it. “

Are you an out of control risk?

Of course, knowing this, families will know they need to take extra precautions, such as: B. have to watch the child more closely. This can also affect what you need to tell the school.

When is your birthday? How have you celebrated it – and other holidays – in the past?

Respecting a child’s traditions can help bring a sense of normalcy into a turbulent time.

What are your medical needs?

Make sure you get health insurance information and possibly a Medicaid cover letter. Also, do as much research as possible on their medical needs to make sure you can deal with them.

But Laura Wilson, a care coordinator, told us, “I find that most families can handle more than they think! You see the need and stretch to make it work. “

You can never ask the question

How long will the child be with us?

Workers often get this question. And the reality is that they have no idea. Unless their parents’ rights have been terminated, everyone is working towards reunification – a process that has milestones but no set deadline.

So … how can you prepare with so many strangers?

Expect to be busy for the first few weeks. There may be medical appointments, school visits, and other commitments.

Karla Adams, who works with foster parents in Missouri, recommends, “You may have a child who cannot sleep. I tell foster parents to try to have good kids’ movies on hand for every age group – cartoon on up. If a child can’t sleep, try putting in a movie and sitting on the couch with them. “

Learn more

These are just a few suggestions to think about when considering an internship. Your agency will likely have a checklist to help you gather these and many more details. If not, the Iowa Foster and Adoptive Parents Association posted this comprehensive questionnaire on their website prior to placement.

Read more about foster parents on our website.

examThe article / podcast was originally published by Adopt US Kids on July 16, 2020. You can find the original article here.

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