Frequently Asked Questions
Q: Does the foster care license cost anything?
A: There is not a cost associated with the foster care license. However, individuals 13 years of age or older will require a completed background check. In some areas, there is a $10 background check fee for individuals 18 years of age or older in the home. A health information form is required and will need to be completed with a signature from a health practitioner. This may be an additional expense unless otherwise covered by your health insurance.
Q: How long is my foster care license good for?
A: A license issued to a foster home is effective for two years
Q: What does the background check process entail?
A: Child/Adult Abuse Check, State and Federal Criminal History, Sex Offender Registry, DMV, and Local Law Enforcement Check.
Q: How many children can I foster?
A: This depends on the number of individuals licensed in the home:
In a home with two licensed foster parents; No more than six children total and no more than four children under age six.
In a home with a single licensed foster parent; No more than four children total and no more than two children under age six.
Q: How much bedroom space do I need to have in my home?
A: A minimum of 35 square feet for each child in the bedroom. Each child must have a bed, bedding, and a place to store his or her belongings. When required, must provide separate bedrooms for children of opposite genders.
Q: Is it okay that I have pets?
A: Yes, as long as they have no history of aggression, are licensed (if required by state/city), and are current on any necessary or required vaccinations.
Q: Are we allowed to get a babysitter?
A: Anyone left alone to care for a foster child must have a background check. You can use other foster families as respite (babysitter). We encourage you to set up your own respite, but can provide you with help if needed.
Q: I have weapons in my home. Is that okay?
A: Guns must be stored unloaded and locked separately from ammunition. Ammunition must be also stored in a separate locked location. Cross bows, bows, arrows, swords, hunting knives, or decorative weapons must be stored in locked locations as well.
Q: Who takes the children to appointments?
A: Transportation to medical appointments, therapy, school activities, etc. is the responsibility of the foster parent. Children in foster care can have a higher frequency of appointments based on their needs.
Q: How will I be prepared to bring a foster child into my home?
A: TIPS-MAPP is a 30 hour training course designed to equip you for foster care. It is a federally required course that must be completed before a child can be placed into your home. Once you have a child placed in your home, a Foster Care Specialist will also support you throughout the placement.
Q: Will I need to carry my foster children on my insurance?
A: A foster parent would not be responsible to insure a child placed with them. In most circumstances, Medical/Dental Insurance is provided through the state.
Q: If the child requires daycare, will I be responsible for paying that?
A: If the foster parent(s) are employed, children placed with them can qualify for a daycare subsidy, called Title 20. There is a list on the DHHS website to help identify daycare providers that accept Title 20 in your area.
Q: Will I be provided an allowance to maintain care for the child?
A: A monthly out-of-home maintenance stipend is provided to assist with costs of room and board, food, clothing, hygiene needs, allowance, transportation, respite care, and other costs of caring for a child. The amount is primarily determined by the child’s age and what the foster parent is doing to meet their needs.
Q: If I only want to adopt a child without fostering, is Christian Heritage the right choice for me?
A: Christian Heritage does not recruit parents only interested in adoption. We believe children should return home to be with their biological family whenever possible. Families that are interested in providing foster care and are open to being a forever family may be supported by Christian Heritage.
Q: After I’m licensed, when will I get a call about a child who may be a potential fit for our family?
A: As soon as we are made aware of a child in need, we will reach out to those families who align or closely align to the needs of the child/children.
Q: What can I expect from Christian Heritage once I get a placement?
A: Christian Heritage will match your home with a Foster Care Specialist, to support you with placement. This Specialist will meet with you to discuss the needs of the child, the needs of your home, develop a support plan and be in your home at least once a month to visit you and the child.
Q: What if we find out the child isn’t a good fit for our home?
A: When you receive a call for possible placement of a child, please have an honest conversation about your ability to accept the responsibility required and how it will impact your family. Removing a child from a home is the last resort and should not be considered unless no other alternatives can be found and all efforts to keep the child in the home have been exhausted.