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Can I Be a Foster Parent?

Wisconsin needs foster parents as diverse as the kids/youth care. More foster parents are needed in counties across Wisconsin. CCR welcomes a diverse pool of foster parents, including differences in age, race, ethnicity, national origin, sexual orientation, gender identity, education, and financial means. Who you love, where you live, and how much money you make aren't important - we recognize that what matters most is that you have the love, time, and patience to care for a child with heightened trauma temporarily.

Anyone can apply to be a foster parent.

Married, single, partnered, divorced, or widowed. Your relationship status doesn't matter to the kids in foster care or us. Families come in many different shapes and sizes, and we assess everyone who applies to foster similarly. Some children in care may benefit from being placed with a single foster parent. Others may thrive from the balance of a nuclear, two-parent household. A widower might be the perfect match for a boy in care. As long as you are 25, you will need a support system and a flexible schedule regardless of your relationship status.

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LGBTQ hoping to be a foster parent, you've come to the right place.

We proudly support the LGBTQ community, believing everyone should have an equal chance to foster a  child. Your self-identity or sexual preferences should not be a concern or prevent you from becoming a foster parent. CCR aims to place as many children as possible in loving, stable homes where healing can happen. Equality is our approach, and placing more children in need into the arms of more loving foster parents is what we’re here to do.

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We're looking for foster parents who want to make a difference and meet kids where they are at. Some youth feel more secure and accepted with LGBTQ foster parents. Many youth benefit from a gender-affirming foster home. There are hundreds of kids longing to be accepted and loved. We need more foster parents who want to learn about trauma and how to parent children with trauma histories. We will teach and guide you no matter who you are, how you identify, or who you love.

Foster parents come from a variety of backgrounds.

There are over 7,400 kids in Wisconsin foster care from all corners of the state. Each child is as different as the families caring for them. Having a wide variety of families is essential to meet the children's individual needs. No matter your race, ethnicity, or national origin, we welcome you to foster with us to help us build an even more robust, diverse nurturing community.

Do you have a high school diploma? Perhaps you never completed high school. That's okay. There is no higher education degree required to be a foster parent. We currently need foster parents of all educational backgrounds in the 60 county locations we serve.

Kids or no kids either is okay.

Many CCR foster parents have biological children. Others have stepchildren, adopted kids, or guardianship. Many CCR foster parents do not have children. They may have nieces or nephews or have worked with children, coached, or volunteered with kids in the community. All are welcome to explore fostering with us. Any experience with children/youth is valuable. Being open-minded and willing to learn how to parent using trauma-informed skills will be necessary.

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What do people believe disqualifies you from becoming a foster parent?

Criminal background or problematic past.

Maybe you found yourself walking a different path in previous years. Perhaps you have minor offenses in your past that you're worried might stop you from fostering. You may even have a felony from years ago. Sometimes the challenges a person has faced, or their life experiences are precisely why they would be a successful foster parent. Please talk with us; we can tell you if your history will allow or prevent you from fostering a child. Most misdemeanors and many felonies will not disqualify you from fostering.

Renting vs. owning a home.

Do I need to own a house to be a foster parent? No. You need a home suitable for fostering, with bedroom space for a foster child or siblings. In addition, you must be free from any form of housing assistance. Foster parents live in various home types, including; apartments, townhomes, trailer homes, and duplexes. Homes must be safe and meet all state licensing requirements. Our team will guide you through the legal and safety requirements of preparing your home to welcome foster children.

Family pets and farm animals.

The majority of our foster families have pets. From dogs and cats to cows and chickens, pets and farm animals can often be a comforting friend to a foster child. However, ensuring that any pets in your household can live safely alongside foster youth is essential. Pets will be assessed as part of the process in areas such as behavior and temperament, and vet records demonstrating up-to-date shots are required. In addition, not all children can be successful living with pets. If a child has a known history of animal aggression or fear of animals, we will search for an appropriate foster home without animals.

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Being financially stable.

It does not matter how much or how little income you have. What matters is that you are financially stable. The ability to pay your bills on time and take care of your household using your income is required. CCR foster parents must be free of housing assistance and food stamps. Any disability benefits will be reviewed to ensure that proper care of the children can be met.

Personal experiences 

Your childhood and adult experiences may help you connect with a child/youth and relate to their trauma history. Every foster parent has something different to offer a child. What matters most is that you desire to learn about childhood trauma and can provide a stable and structured environment. Your life experiences, bad or good, could make you the perfect match for a child/youth in foster care.

We need foster homes with flexible schedules in all corners of Wisconsin. We especially need more homes wishing to help siblings and teens. Please contact us anytime to discuss your interest and learn more about fostering with us. 

 

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