There are millions of children in the United States that need a safe and stable home to live in. Some children are never adopted and they end up growing up without parents to call their own. That’s why fostering a child is one of the best methods that state agencies use to put children in homes temporarily. You may want to bring a child into your home but not yet feel that you are ready for the permanency of adoption. Going through the child fostering process can help you to get some experience with children of all ages so that you know what age child you feel most comfortable taking care of. Realize that you need to do more than provide a separate room for a foster child to live in. Know that you will be responsible for your foster child getting to and from school, eating nutritious meals, and feeling safe and loved at your house.
Getting a Crash Course in Child Rearing
Maybe you grew up in a household with many sisters and brothers and you were tasked with helping your younger brothers and sisters get dressed for school or babysat them on the weekends. There are also potential foster parents who have been watching all of their friends settling down and building families, which might have inspired them to look into fostering and adoption. You could also just be someone who sees a need in the community and you are doing what you can to help needy children. In any case, there’s no difference between fostering a child and raising a child. You will be their parent for the time being so you have to know how you will discipline your foster child, have a plan for approaching school, and homework and have good ideas for encouraging social and extracurricular activities.
Being a Foster Parent Means Your Finances Need to be Stable
Children can eat a lot and they can outgrow clothing before they are able to wear some of the new outfits hanging in their closets. If you are used to just providing a roof over your head it can be shocking to see first-hand how expensive raising an adolescent is. So, to foster a child you will need money in the bank. You will also need other assets available that can be cashed in with ease in case a major expense becomes necessary. The good news is that foster children can get free insurance, so that’s one less cost you will have to shoulder.
Fostering a Child is Usually Temporary
Foster children may be placed in several homes before eventually being adopted or aging out. Typically, foster children only stay with families for about two years. If you have grown to love your foster child, you may never want to see them go, but the process of fostering has been developed to help as many children as possible. You may want to have additional foster children placed in your home or even go through with adoption if you want your family to remain intact.
You will go through background checks and have to maintain contact with a social worker in order to be cleared to foster a child in need. There will also be a home evaluation to see how suitable your house is for child rearing. Foster parents are valuable and there is always a need for more so stick to the course and soon your home will be filled with laughter and love.