How to Become a Foster Family
Park County Human Services is looking for foster families to work with us as a part of the county team.
Foster care is a protective service to children and their families when families can no longer care for their children. Foster parents embrace children, value their family connection, and provide a home free of abuse and neglect until they can return home, be adopted or live independently. They must be willing to care for a child, whether they are in the home for 1 day or for a year.
All foster parents must be certified in order to provide care for children. The best way to start the process is to make a phone call to Park County Human Services at (719) 836-4137 so we may send you information about the agency and the certification process. You may fill out the Original Application to Care for Children (PDF) to start the process. Mail a completed application to: Park County Department Human Services
C/O Foster Care
PO Box 968
Fairplay, CO 80440
The key qualification is being able to meet the physical, emotional and developmental needs of a child. Foster parents are expected to:
- Provide 24-hour care and supervision on a daily basis
- Provide shelter, food and clothing
- Provide each child with a comfortable, separate bed and adequate space for each child's belongings
- Provide structure, rules and utilize non-physical forms of discipline
- Have the children attend school on a regular basis
- Meet transportation needs, including to medical, physical and mental health appointments
- Handle challenging parenting situations, including emotional, behavioral, medical or developmental challenges that may result from the child's experience with abuse, neglect, loss and separation
- Ability to handle difficult behaviors, such as defiance, running away, excessive lying, stealing, truancy, sexualized behaviors, aggression, and substance abuse
- Be flexible, patient and understanding
- Have a home free of fire and safety hazards
- Complete a criminal background check
- Willingness to comply with child welfare rules, regulations and case plans
- Have the ability to work as a member of a team
Working with the children's family:
- Participate as a member of the treatment team working to strengthen and reunify the child's biological family;
- Value and help to maintain the child's connections with their biological family;
- Provide transportation to family visits;
- Participate in case planning and related meetings;
- Record the child's observed behavior and progress, and address behavioral difficulties; and
- Communicate with the child's caseworker and other professionals, such as attorney or Guardian ad Litem (GAL), therapists, physicians and law enforcement.
Qualifications for Foster Family Homes are:
- Must be at least 21 years of age
- Must be a US citizen, legal permanent resident of the US or lawfully present in the US
- Must have adequate space and a bedroom available for the foster child (May be shared with another child)
- Must have a stable income to support your existing family
- Must be healthy enough to care for a child
- Must complete our application process and Pre-Service Training
- Must pass a home study
- Must be approved by Park County Human Services
- Spouses or live-in partners must also be committed to the program.
A Foster Family:
- May be of any religion, race, ethnicity, or cultural background
- May be married, single, living with a partner
- May rent or own your residence
- May or may not be a parent
- May be with or without children
- Include diverse economic status and family composition
You will not qualify if any adults in the household have been convicted of any of the following (including any deferred judgment):
- A crime of violence as defined in Section 18-1.3-406, C.R.S.
- Child abuse as specified in Section 18-6-401, C.R.S.
- Felony sexual behavior
- Felony domestic violence
- Felony physical assault or battery
- Felony drug-related/alcohol-related offense in the past 5 years
*The State of Colorado and Park County Department of Human Services does not allow the use of or growth of marijuana by any adults in their certified foster homes, despite its legalization in the State of Colorado.