Here are some of our frequently asked questions.
Can you foster if you have ever been divorced?
Yes, the divorce needs to be finalized for a minimum of 12 months.
How many bedrooms should my home have?
A baby can share a bedroom with the foster parents until the age of one. However there needs to be a room and space for a baby once they turn one as they can no longer share a room with foster parents. No more than two children in a room. A foster child can share a bedroom with another child of the same sex. Sometimes the need of a child can change this: (IE: sexual abuse) and children may need to be alone in a room. Each child needs to have their own bed.
Does it matter if you rent or own your home?
You are allowed to rent your home as long as you have a rental contract.
Do my biological children have to be vaccinated?
Yes, they have to be up to date with the vaccinations required for their current age.
Can I foster if I have a past criminal record? Drug history?
Felonies are non-negotiable; however, misdemeanors are decided on a case by case basis. The final decision is left to the state of GA. If you have a criminal history, it is best to get your fingerprints done first, before you begin the process, to determine whether you should move forward.
Are there any vaccinations adults would need?
If you choose to foster a child under the age of two or special needs child, you will need the flu shot (seasonal) and whooping cough shot and be up date to date on all your vaccinations. Most doctor's offices will provide this.
Are Pets okay? How do your pets interact with children? What if your foster children are allergic to your animals?
Yes, pets are okay in home. They must be up to date on their rabies vaccinations. They must be gentle with children and cannot act aggressively or bite children. If a foster child is allergic to your animal, the foster child will more than likely need to be moved to another home.
Can foster kids be homeschooled? What are their school options?
Foster kids may not be homeschooled. They can go to private school if you are willing to provide the funds or they have an IEP. The state will pay up to $9,500 per year if there is an IEP in place. The state also must approve of them being in private school prior to enrollment. For kids under school age, the state requires them to go to daycare. This is a state policy even if there is a stay at home caregiver.
Does it affect my home if we have a pool or any body of water? (lake, koi pond)
You will have to complete a water safety training course online. You will have to know how to swim and have a supervision plan in place. The pool must meet the state's safety standards.
Are guns allowed in the homes?
Yes, they are required to be locked up. Ammunition must be locked separately. A police officer is an exception to this rule.
How much will my home study cost me?
The home study itself is free. However, you will have to pay $50 dollars per parent for fingerprints. You will also be responsible for your own medical bills and vaccinations - this includes your family members, biological children, and animals.
Can I choose preferences for age and gender of foster children?
Yes, however the more specific your preferences are narrowed down on age and gender, the longer you could wait for placement.
Is it ok for me to smoke?
Families 4 Families promotes a smoke-free environment both in our office and our foster homes. We do not approve families that smoke.
How long will the process take?
2 - 4 months depending on background checks and how fast you complete your paperwork.