The big news in my sector right now is that my partner and I have our first placements through foster care! We started the process of qualifying a year and a half ago. To do that you have to apply, obtain four references, do a background check, take nine three hour classes, and then complete a home study. We initially were headed toward adoption, but through the process decided to go with foster-to-adopt instead.
Our reasons were based on how the system works in Oregon. With adoption through DHS, you don’t get a chance to get to know the kids before they are placed with you. If you foster, on the other hand, you take care of them and get a chance to see how they fit with your family. Of course, the system would always like to reunify kids with their parents when possible. If you choose to foster, you have to be emotionally ready to help the kids be happy to go back home if it works out that way. There’s a definite emotional risk if you get attached.
We have had our foster kids for about a month now. It is our first time being parents, so it has been quite an adjustment! They are remarkably capable, challenging, and all around adorable. I’ve found being a Mom quite rewarding. We won’t know for some time if they will be up for adoption, but we are okay with that since we are going through our own process of figuring out if it is a good fit.
Please feel welcome to contact me if you have any questions about foster care. It’s something I love to talk about!