Below are some of the frequently asked questions
that families ask us before embarking in a foster
care ministry. If you have other questions, please don't hesitate
to contact us.
1. Does a FaithBridge foster family
have a say in choosing a child?
Yes. During the Home Study process there will plenty of
opportunity to discuss the kind of children you are thinking about
fostering. We call this your "desired placement" with regards to
the sex of a child, age and race, and we'll want to know the
rationale for your criteria. Are you concerned about your own
children's birth order or do you have concerns about specific
behaviors you might encounter? Are you concerned about your
extended family or neighborhood reaction to a cross-cultural
placement? Think about it and we'll discuss it. Please keep an open
mind. You might be surprised by your own and your family's ability
to accept more or different kids when you see that they really just
need a stable family.
Ultimately, FaithBridge sets a "recommended placement" for each
of its families at the time of initial approval. You will only be
called to place children that fall within these criteria. We hope
following this extensive evaluation process, you will accept
children within your range, but ultimately the decision to accept a
placement is yours. Turning down a placement for a legitimate
reason will not affect future referrals.
2. How long do foster children stay in
The length of time varies according to the needs of the children
and their families. Some children are placed briefly (a few days)
while some remain for months to years. The average length of
stay is six months.
3. What about biological parent
The goal of FaithBridge Foster Care is the return of children to
their biological families. To maintain the child's relationship
with their birth parents, regularly scheduled visitations are
arranged and supervised by FaithBridge staff. FaithBridge
encourages foster parents to be involved, when appropriate, and
provides guidance and coaching to help with this.
4. Can FaithBridge foster families house several
children at one time?
No more than four children under the age of 17, including
biological children, may reside in a FaithBridge foster home.
An exception may be made to this to meet the needs of a sibling
group, as it is always in the best interest of siblings to remain
together. It is a FaithBridge practice to not place unrelated
foster children in the same home; however, in extenuating
circumstances, this may occur.
5. Who takes responsibility for the child in the
You are responsible for the daily care of foster children in
your home. FaithBridge, DFCS and biological parents maintain
various legal, guardianship and service responsibilities of foster
children. FaithBridge maintains overall responsibility for
decisions regarding children, and any and all questions and major
decisions should be discussed with your family
6. What happens if the placement doesn't work out?
Will FaithBridge make other plans for the foster
FaithBridge Foster Care maintains the principle of "First
Placement, Best Placement" for the foster children in care and
seeks to prevent "disruptions" in placement. Foster families are
encouraged to contact their family consultant when having
difficulties and make all efforts to stabilize the home and
placement. Children will only be moved to another placement in an
emergency or as a last resort. Moving requires
72-hours, notice so as to allow adequate time for planning a
7. Are the children available for
The majority of children in foster care return to their
biological family, which is most often the best option. If
appropriate, children should have the opportunity to grow and
develop in their own family circle. This is where their roots are,
and their roots and family involvement are very important to who
they are, how they perceive themselves and who they become.
When reunification is not an option, an adoptive family for the
child will be sought. Eighty percent of children who are adopted
from foster care are adopted by their foster parents. In this
situation, a child gets to stay in a familiar environment that has
been a safe and nurturing home. FaithBridge can assist you in the
process of transitioning from a foster family to an adoptive family
should you decide to become the child's new forever family.
8. Are there costs involved to become a FaithBridge
You will incur expenses in becoming a foster parent. Generally
there are fees involved for requirements, including but not limited
to drug screens, fingerprinting, co-payments for physical exams or
medical documentation, veterinary expenses for rabies vaccinations
and septic tank inspections.
9. Who is responsible for the children's medical and
Foster children are wards of the state and are therefore
eligible for Medicaid. Prior to setting up any appointments with
physicians or dentists, contact the provider to find out if s/he
accepts Medicaid. Upon placement, child should see
a physician within 72 hours.
10. What costs, if any, am I reimbursed
There are a number of pre-approved expenses for which foster
families can receive reimbursements. These one-time or occasional
costs must be approved by a FaithBridge family consultant before
the purchase is made. Many of these types of expenses have a set
annual allowance that the child must stay within, regardless of how
many foster homes and parents he or she has had in the year.
Examples of these expenses are clothing, hair care, school photos
and yearbooks, field trips, travel, extracurricular and medical
expenses. In order to receive reimbursement for these expenses, you
must provide original receipts. Your FaithBridge family consultant
will provide you with more information on allowances for
reimbursement expenses for any foster child in your care.
11. Do I receive any tax breaks for being a foster
There are some tax implications for foster families, and
FaithBridge recommends consulting a CPA or tax advisor prior to
preparing your annual filing.