Children and youth in foster care are best supported through a continuum of care that provides ongoing services. Transition planning is critical for children and youth during placement with potentially permanent families and after placement to solidify and stabilize the new or reconstituted family. Families should be involved in transition planning, as should all relevant service providers and community supports. Because of the disproportionate number of children of color involved with the child welfare system, recruiting and supporting resource families, adoptive families, and kinship families from diverse racial and cultural backgrounds is important, as is providing culturally responsive transition support and services to these families. The following resources offer information about providing appropriate transition support and services to children and families.
Helping Your Child Transition from Foster Care to Adoption
How to Help an Older Child or Teen Adjust to Your Home
Kittle & Reed (2020)
Presents tips for adoptive parents on how to help an older youth or teen adjust to a new home. The tips include be trustworthy, communicate expectations, encourage honesty, be open minded and accepting, let them be a kid, and others.
How to Support Foster, Adoptive, and Kinship Families of Color [Webinar]
Shares a webinar on the importance of cultural responsiveness and racial equity with working with and supporting foster, adoptive, and kinship families of color in child welfare.
Making Smooth Transitions for The Youngest Children in Foster Care
Court Appointed Special Advocates of Montgomery County
Explains how child welfare professionals and others can help infants and toddlers through difficult transitions and provides tips for how to help them understand what they are going through and to adjust.
Permanency Is a Process: Transitioning a Child Into Your Home
Indiana Adoption Program (2022)
Reviews the importance of transition planning when welcoming a child into the home and provides tips for resource families on supporting successful transitions for children. Also, read Permanency Is a Process: Transitioning a Child From Your Home.
Planning for Permanency: A Foster Parent’s Guide
Lawrence Hall (2021)
Offers information for resource parents on how to support permanency plans for youth in care and how to plan for and support transitions to adoption, reunification, or other types of permanency.
Preparing Children and Youth for Adoption or Other Family Permanency
Support Families Who Provide Permanence
National Quality Improvement Center for Adoption and Guardianship Support and Preservation (2021)
Describes the need to allocate resources to ensure the stability and well-being of children in out-of-home care and discusses the importance of supporting resource families through adoption, guardianship, and any permanency journey.
Supporting Families During the Transition From Foster Care to Adoption [Webinar]
Provides a webinar that reviews the importance of concurrent planning and supporting foster families as they transition to adoptive families.
Transitioning Children With Developmental Trauma Into an Adoptive Home
Kansas Department for Children and Families & Adopt Kansas Kids (2021)
Provides guidance on using the 3-5-7 Model to assist children who have experienced developmental trauma move into an adoptive placement, including age-appropriate tips for preparation step of the process.
Presents information on transition planning and practice guidelines for child welfare professionals and others assisting children and youth with foster care and adoption transitions. It also provides insight on helping all involved deal with loss and grief.
Transitions: Why Are They Hard, And What Can We Do?
Explores the types of transitions children and youth in foster care may experience and offers some tips for parents, caregivers, and professionals to support children during difficult transitions.
Trauma-Informed Practice Strategies to Support Youth Transition [Webinar]
Capacity Building Center for Tribes (2021)
Shares a webinar on ways of using culturally relevant practice strategies to help minimize experiences of trauma during transitions that youth make in foster care.
Trauma-Informed Youth Transitions in Tribal Child Welfare (PDF - 823 KB)
Capacity Building Center for Tribes, Tribal Information Exchange (2021)
Describes how child welfare practitioners can use a trauma-informed approach to support youth as they leave their homes, transition into a new home and environment, and transition back home.