Common Questions About Foster Care

Children may be removed from their home for many reasons, including neglect, abuse or the parent’s inability to care for the child/ren due to addiction, homelessness or other reasons. While we hope every child can reunite with family or a relative, the process can take a long time as caregivers must demonstrate that they can offer safety, stability and a loving environment.

Foster parents play a vital role, as a bridge, safe haven and loving non-judgmental influence that can be life-changing to kids enduring trauma and upheaval. Our foster parents are trained to support the well-being, safety and social-emotional health needs of these children so they are set up for success.

Some children exposed to neglect and abuse may experience extreme trauma and “act out” in challenging ways. That’s where St. Vincent Family Services comes in. Our experienced staff provides expert training, 24/7 support and one-on-one coaching. St. Vincent’s foster parents also have access to all of our social-emotional health services as well as our behavioral health experts to offer the support needed.

St. Vincent Family Services collaborates with you and the local children’s services agency on this critical decision. Our team carefully reviews a child’s needs to match them with foster parents who seem a fit based upon expressed preferences, skills of the foster parents and a host of related factors. We listen to you and exercise our best judgment based upon the unique needs of children in our care. Once we offer your home to the children’s services agency, they will make the final placement decision for the best foster family available to meet the individualized needs of the foster child or sibling group.

Foster parents receive a tax-free, twice monthly, pre-determined reimbursement to assist with the foster child’s basic needs. The amount is directly deposited into your account based on the number of days the child is in your care. Regarding health care, all foster care children are on the Medicaid program.

The children’s services agency will decide at the time of placement any relatives or others the child/ren may have contact with during their stay in foster care, and how frequent this contact should be. It is important that the child/ren see you working together with their family and developing a relationship with them. St. Vincent Family Services is with you every step of the way in finding how best, and most responsibly, to help the child with a family-oriented approach.

Change is hard for children and, when possible, foster children may be able to remain in their home school. If this is not in their best interest, they can be enrolled in the school local to the foster home. This will be decided on a case-by-case basis by the children’s services agency.

There is no age limit for who can foster, as long as you’re healthy.

No. We have incredible foster parents who are single.

Yes. Temporarily caring for a foster child is very different from raising biological children from birth due to the trauma of abuse and neglect. As long as you’re patient, committed, flexible and compassionate, you’ll be a great foster parent.