The Best Kind

January 29th, 2012
Posted By: on Foster Care

1129580_frozen_sunsetI am snuggled up on the sofa with two of my favorite people. It is just that kind of day- the snow is falling and wind blowing. It is cold. So the family is reading, blogging, watching, puzzling and cooking. Everyone is at their respective 'favorite' activity. I can't think of a better way to spend a long and lazy Sunday. It's the lazy days that get me thinking about how lucky I am to be where I am. My kids are not actually all my own, I have some on loan at this point. I am trying to work at capturing these moments in my heart because I know that some of my kids will not always be here. That is one of… [more]

Hullabaloo

December 28th, 2011
Posted By: on Foster Care

1164982_happy_family_I have noticed that most of my families' interaction occurs around the eight foot island that we have in our kitchen. This should come as no surprise since it is only a step away from the refrigerator and I have three teenagers and an almost 10 year old. I have to laugh though at how many times a day I wipe that counter clean. I am not sure that you would even believe me. Yesterday night, we ate around it. I laid out all of the Christmas leftovers, paper plates and yelled, "Come and get it!" They sure took me seriously. It was like a stampede of elephants thundering from their respective corners of the house. Thank heavens I had the foresight to choose my… [more]

Group Homes and Other Craziness

May 1st, 2011
Posted By: on Foster Care

mothers day vintage graphic--graphicsfairy010I almost threw a rock at my television the other day.  A television actress was bragging to Ellen or someone about a group home she started in her home town in Mississippi.  She said she started the home to "fix the broken foster care system."  Seriously??? There is so much that people do not understand about Foster Care.  They have the impression that (a) siblings are always separated, (b) that kids go to foster care and never get out, and (c) that all foster homes are negligent, dirty and uncaring.  By the way, this is the point of view that the actress was putting forth. By contrast, my experience with foster parents is completely the opposite.   Maybe things are different… [more]

Kinship (part 2)

January 17th, 2011
Posted By: on Foster Care

1056039_man_woman_heart_3 A couple days ago I posted on the positive benefits of placing children with relatives when they need to be removed from their parent's custody. Today I would like to discuss some of the negative side effects I have witnessed when children have been placed with kin. One of the first things you quickly realize when becoming involved in child welfare, is the cyclical nature of abuse. What I mean by this is, you can often see generations of family who have suffered from the negative effects of child abuse and neglect. Thus, when you are looking at placing children with relatives you are, in a very real sense, often just placing them back in the same sad plot, just with new characters… [more]

Kinship (part 1)

January 11th, 2011
Posted By: on Foster Care

1056039_man_woman_heart_3I come from a fairly happy, functonal family. If anything ever happened to my husband and I there is no doubt my children would have several loving, capable homes to choose from. In fact, this is the informal way foster care has been done for years, in lots of cultures. There are many benefits to having a niece, nephew, cousin or grandchild find premancy and love with a relative. There are also some major drawbacks. This first post will address some of the postive aspects of kinship placements, while the second will speak to issues which might cause complications. Kinship placements occurs when a child, who is taken into state custody, finds stability and comfort with extended family members. Many states are pushing kinship homes as… [more]

An Overnight Visit With Previous Foster Child

June 23rd, 2008

Three weeks ago our five year old foster daughter returned home to her birthmother. We have spent the 16 months of parenting her developing a strong relationship with her birth family. Not just developing a relationship with her parents, buts aunts, uncles, significant others, and grandparents as well. We worked on building this relationship for several reasons. First, we had parented this child for nearly a year when she was one and two years old. Therefore, we love her, we have known her for most of her life, and she feels like a member of our family. In addition, we adopted her 10-year-old birth cousin with whom she had lived as sisters. Her return home was very difficult for her cousin to accept. However, we promised… [more]

Process of Kinship Placements & Family Involvement in Foster Care

September 29th, 2007
Posted By: on Foster Care
Categories: Kinship

Kinship Placements & Family Involvement in Foster Care Make contact with the child’s caseworker by telephone letting him or her know that you are willing to provide kinship placement. Follow your phone call up with a certified letter to the caseworker stating your desires to be involved, along with making references to the phone call you had with her, including her name, date, time, etc. Making a paper trail in your contact with the caseworker and your desires to be involved is a must. Any correspondences you have with the caseworker or anyone else involved should be sent certified mail allowing you proof that it was received by someone at the agency. Within a few days of the children being removed, the case… [more]

Kinship Placements & Family Involvement in Foster Care

September 28th, 2007
Posted By: on Foster Care
Categories: Kinship

Kinship placements are mostly left in the hands of the biological parents. Whether kinship placement is used or who is suggested out of the family is in the hands of the biological parents for the most part. For the family member wanting to provide a family foster placement there may be more obstacles for you to overcome if the biological parents do not support you as a kinship placement. I have been asked how kinship foster placements work, and other information concerning them. The problem is, that I cannot answer the questions because there is not a clear set of guidelines across the board for kinship placements. Some states are starting to pass laws or guidelines for kinship foster placement. For the most part… [more]

Family Reunification, How it Can Go So Wrong

July 28th, 2007
Posted By: on Foster Care

Family Reunification Over What is Best For The Children? A two year old toddler of a 17 year old mother was placed into foster care as an infant. The mother left the child to be cared for by a paternal grandmother. The grandmother would go out drinking leaving the baby in the care of other relatives. The baby went into another family placement briefly which also did not work out. After all of that, the infant was placed into foster care. He was placed into a loving foster home at the age of one. The foster family was told a numbers of times that the grandmother would get the baby. Someone decided that it would be better to place the toddler in the… [more]

Family Reunification Over What is Best For The Children?

July 27th, 2007
Posted By: on Foster Care

Family reunification has become a main focus for most if not all child welfare agencies. A lot of agencies have gotten tunnel-vision with this and it seems to be the only goal that a lot of people involved child welfare are even looking at for the children. Yes, children most definitely need family reunification when it is the best thing for them. Let’s be honest and open about all of this. The overall picture of the family situation and the abuse that the children have suffered needs to be part of this decision.If the child welfare agency has dealt with the same biological parents time and time again, reunification should not be an option for them. We have laws… [more]