THE PROCESS

We understand that choosing to become a foster parent is a big decision. That is why we are here for you every step of the way! We will not only help you through the process of becoming approved but also afterwards once you have a child placed with you. We exist solely to support you and help you to be successful in your fostering journey!

Should you decide to jump in with us, the process to becoming a licensed foster parent would involve:

1

Express your interest

We encourage you to move at a comfortable pace. We’re here to answer your questions, and we want you to feel confident in your foster care decisions. Call us at 800-686-6627 ext. 126 to begin the process or

2

Attend Pre-Service Classes

One of the first and most important steps you will complete is pre-service training. Required by the State of Ohio, the classes are designed to educate you about the children available for adoption, and to prepare you to parent them. We offer the classes throughout the year at various times and locations.

3

Submit Your Application

During the first session of training you will receive an application packet. Fill in the application form as completely and accurately as possible and return it to Northeast Ohio Adoption Services. If you have questions we are available to assist you. Ask your
pre-service trainer or call our office.

4

Complete Home Study
(a.k.a Family Assessment)

Once your application has been received, a NOAS social worker will be assigned to begin your Home Study. The process, which usually takes 4 to 6 months to complete, is designed to help us gain an understanding of you, your family, and your environment. Throughout the study we will be working with you to determine what type of child (or children) will be the best match for you.

5

Matching Process

Once your home study has been approved, you are ready for the next step. Keeping in mind the preferences you expressed during your home study, and working closely with you, your NOAS worker will begin the search to find a child(ren) for your family. Children are what this is all about!

6

Visiting

This stage begins after you and your NOAS worker have identified a child for your family, AND after the child’s custodial county has selected you as the foster parent(s). A typical placement begins in the child’s foster home if the child is residing at a foster home, followed by an afternoon visit to your home, then builds to weekend visits, and overnight visits, until eventually the child moves into your home.

7

Placement

Both before and after a child is placed with a foster family, NOAS staff are there to assist the family. Staff are sensitive and knowledgeable about the process and the feelings all family members experience. They are available to offer help, support and encouragement. Once a placement has occurred, a social worker will continue to visit the home at least once a month and will be available for phone calls and emails at any other time.

At Foster for a Difference, we take pride in being extremely personable and offer 24 hour agency access for emergencies. You will never be left to wonder what your next step should be. It truly is our aim to be with you every step of the way. Take the next step today! Join us in making sure that every foster child in Ohio has a safe and loving foster family to care for them.