Foster parenting is one of the most fulfilling duties there is. Although this role undoubtedly brings its challenges, you are making a conscious decision to care for a child in need — and what could be more rewarding than that?
When deciding if this is the right path for you, there are many benefits that are worth consideration. If any of these five statements resonate with you, you may want to take steps to learn more about how to become a foster parent.
1. You feel you have more to give as a parent.
Whether you’ve never had children, you’re an empty nester, or you just can’t get enough of kids, you may feel like you’re not done parenting quite yet. Fostering a child allows you to expand your skill set as a parent and grow in unexpected ways.
This is a great opportunity for those who feel it is their destiny to be a parent and haven’t yet fulfilled that destiny to their satisfaction. No matter what stage of life you’re in, if you have the resources, patience, and love to foster a child in need, you can learn more about parenting — and yourself — through foster care than in perhaps any other role.
2. You want to make a positive impact in your community.
There is high demand for foster parents in nearly every city across America. While it is a huge commitment worthy of serious thought and consideration, it is also a necessary and important form of volunteering that will make a significant impact in your local community and in the life of a child.
By fostering a child in need of a safe place to call home, you are actively helping in the fight against homelessness, poverty, high school dropout rates, and more. You are also allowing the youth’s birth parents to take the time they need to recover from whatever removed them from their home in the first place.
Foster parenting is a selfless contribution to society that your community will look proudly upon and thank you for.
3. You are a true people person seeking a challenge.
As a foster parent, you will be required to work with teachers, doctors, therapists, caseworkers, attorneys, and the biological parents to ensure your foster youth is receiving all the resources needed to live a happy, healthy, normal life. You will receive special foster parent training to learn how to navigate the system, get the resources your child needs, and help the child deal with the traumas they have suffered.
Foster parenting is certainly not a role for the faint-hearted. Every day will bring new challenges and new opportunities for growth. It takes a lot of energy and time, not just with the foster youth him/herself, but with every person involved in their arrangement (and there are plenty).
4. You have a desire to drastically improve the quality of a child’s life.
If you are considering the benefits of fostering a child, the primary benefit is arguably that you are helping a child or youth in need. They are at their most vulnerable, and you have the opportunity to help raise them and put them on the path to success.
Although it is a temporary arrangement, you will build a meaningful, lifelong relationship while fostering a child. In the years to come, you can watch them grow and succeed, basking in the knowledge that you helped make that possible.
Without you, this child’s life could have quickly taken a turn for the worse, but your time and investment in their well-being and success has made all the difference. Becoming a foster parent is one of the most selfless things a person can do, and it is something to be very proud of at the end of each day.
Not just anyone can become a foster parent. It takes a special type of personality — as well as a special type of home.
You need available bedroom and bathroom space to lend your home to a foster youth. Depending on how spacious your home is and how plentiful your resources are, you could even consider fostering siblings.
In most cases, it’s extremely difficult to find foster parents who are willing to accommodate a pair (or more) of brothers and sisters. After a youth loses their home and the daily presence of their birth parents, being forced to separate from their siblings is a devastating loss. If you have the means to spare foster children this heartbreak by taking in both them and their sibling(s), it is worth considering.
If you and/or your partner are interested in becoming foster parents, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org. We can help you take the appropriate next steps.