Children in Family Foster Care and Kinship Care live in safe, stable, nurturing, and often temporary family settings that best provide the continuity of care to preserve relationships, promote well-being, and ensure permanency.
Examples: A recruitment plan can specify how carefully crafted language, images, and strategies, including partnerships with key stakeholders, can help the organization reach out and appeal to audiences who may be willing and able to foster or adopt children in need of homes, including children with special placement needs (e.g., sibling groups; older children; children with physical, emotional, behavioural, and developmental issues; children of minority racial or ethnic groups; LGBTQ children; and youth who are pregnant or parenting.) For example, if it has proven difficult to find homes for teenagers, the organization might look for prospective resource parents among high school parents and coaches, and after school programs for teens. Similarly, if the organization wishes to recruit resource parents from particular ethnic or racial groups it might seek to engage specific cultural organizations, churches, or minority-owned businesses. Other key stakeholders can include:
family foster care alumni;
current resource parents;
community leaders; and
other organizations, agencies, institutions, and businesses in the community.
Organizations may also employ intensive child-specific recruitment strategies that include identifying all adults with a connection to the child to consider serving as resource parents or identify other potential resource parents, and involving the child to identify preferences and potential resource parents.
To help prospective resource families determine if providing care would be a positive experience for both their family and the children that could enter their care, the organization provides general information about:
the certification process and requirements, including the resource family assessment experience and timeline;
available supports and services;
any applicable fees and reimbursements;
the roles, responsibilities, and needed competencies of resource parents;
what resource families should expect when they take in a child;
common needs and characteristics of children in care; and
next steps in the process.
Prospective resource families are engaged in the recruitment process through:
a welcoming and supportive approach that encourages prospective families to move forward with the process;
equitable, timely, sensitive, and culturally-responsive follow-up at each step of the process;
personalized contact with existing resource families; and
open houses, orientations, and training sessions that are accessible and inviting to all prospective resource families.