Foster parents receive extensive training and guidance for their role—serving as caretakers and supporting the families of the children in their home. Still, the child welfare system is complex and can be difficult to navigate, even for seasoned resource parents. The following resources provide information that supports foster parents as they partner with caseworkers and birth parents to provide consistent care for children in their homes.
3 Simple Ways to Build a Positive Relationship With Your Foster Child's Birth Parents
Trinity Youth Services (2018)
Provides information on how foster parents can work to build positive relationships with birth parents. The tips include suggestions on how to be supportive, what questions to ask yourself, how to host family meetings, and more.
10 Resources for Foster Parents
Annie E. Casey Foundation (2018)
Provides 10 resources for foster parents and families to help them parent children in their care and navigate the child welfare system. Resources include a blog post on keeping siblings together, a website about raising grandchildren, a magazine written by parents who have experienced the child welfare system, and more.
Family Focused Treatment Association
Provides resources to connect biological, foster, and adoptive families with organizations supporting family-based treatment for youth.
Five Tips for Building A Foster Parent Support Network
Colorado Child Abuse and Neglect Public Awareness Campaign (2019)
Provides a list of insights on finding the supports that foster parents and families need be resilient and successful, including how to ask for help, joining a support group, accessing donated items, and more.
LGBTQ Youth: A Guide for Foster Parents, Counselors, and Social Workers
Offers information about issues LGBTQ youth may face and provides resources for those working with LGBTQ youth.
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Child Welfare Information Gateway
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Positive Interactions With Birthparents as a Foster Parent
Explains how to have positive interactions with birth parents during a foster placement and provides tips for foster parents on how to handle various situations.
Tips for Helping Children and Teens Before and After Visitation
American Academy of Pediatrics & Healthy Foster Care America (2015)
Includes tips for birth and foster parents and kin for before and after visitation.
Ways to Build and Maintain Sibling Connections When Placed Separately (PDF - 2,007 KB)
Iowa Foster and Adoptive Parents Association (2016)
News From Your Peer Liaison
Lists ways in which foster parents can support sibling relationships when siblings are placed separately in foster care. Strategies include arranging regular face-to-face visits, helping the children initiate contact, putting up pictures of siblings in the home, including information about siblings in children's life books, and having the children see the same therapist on the same day so they can visit with each other afterward.
Welcoming a Foster Child Into Your Home
Discusses the feelings and challenges foster parents experience during their first placement. The article also addresses questions foster parents may have for their caseworkers and provides suggestions on first steps they can make once their children arrive for their first nights.