When children cannot remain in their own homes due to safety concerns, and appropriate relatives are not available, Foster Care is the next least restrictive and preferred setting. While Foster Care is considered a temporary situation it is a full time commitment. A child will remain in a Foster home until such time as their parents or an appropriate relative are able to safely resume their parenting responsibilities or an adoptive family is found. Sometimes this process moves quickly yet the length of placement varies with each child’s circumstances.
During the time a child is residing with a Foster family, a case worker will visit your home monthly to monitor the child’s progress. You will also have a monthly visit from your placement specialist who is there to support you in your role as a Foster Parent. You will receive a monthly stipend which is reimbursement for meeting the basic needs of the child or children placed in your home.
Adoption is the permanent and legal transfer of all parental rights and responsibilities from one family to another. When adopting children through Wayne County Children Services, the agency would first obtain permanent custody of the child through Juvenile Court and then the child would be legally eligible for adoption. Adoptive parents assume all the rights and responsibilities any biological parent would have. This is a permanent arrangement. Some adopted children are eligible to receive a monthly stipend from the state. This adoption subsidy is child specific and determined by the state on a case-by-case basis.
Can Foster Families Adopt a Foster Child?
Yes. When a child becomes eligible for adoption, often times the person or family with whom the child has been residing is the preferred option to adopt. Wayne County Children Services firmly believes moves hurt kids and we strive to reduce the number of moves children experience. Sometimes however, circumstances exist which might make someone else a more appropriate choice to adopt. Some examples of this might be a relative, or to reunify a child with siblings already being cared for by someone else who is willing and able to care for all of the children together.
To Be a Foster and/or Adoptive Parent:
- You only have to be 21 years old to become a licensed Foster Parent.
- You only have to be 18 years old to be approved for Adoption.
- You do NOT have to be married to become a licensed Foster Parent
- If you once were married, you do have to be legally divorced or separated.
- You don’t have to be rich but you do need to show a steady and stable source of income.
- You do not have to own your own home but if you do rent, you must have the approval of your landlord to foster children.
- Your home must be able to pass an Inspection performed by the local Fire Marshall.
- All adult household members will need to complete a criminal background check but NOT all crimes will disqualify you from becoming a licensed Foster Parent.
- While we do need Foster Parents for all children, you can specify the age, race, gender and number of children you are willing to care for
If you have have specific questions regarding foster and/or adoption parenting in Wayne County, please feel free to contact our recruitment specialist Suzanne Greenberg at (330) 345-5340 ext. 2339 or request more information via the link below.