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HOME VISITING: National Foster Care Month- Preparing to be a foster parent

May is National Foster Care month. This month we want to recognize the important role foster parents play in the lives of children of all ages. The first few years of a child’s life is a critical period for healthy development. That’s why parents and caregivers of all kinds are important during this time.

First off, you might be asking, “what is foster parenting“? A foster parent is a person that provides love, care, and guidance to a child when their family or parents can’t. Being a foster parent is a big commitment. While it is not a permanent arrangement, it is important that you always remember to do what’s best for the child. This includes putting their interests and needs first. You’re there to help them live a happy and healthy life in a safe home. This means meeting day to day needs like providing food and clothing. It also means tackling larger issues like getting proper education, health care and caseworkers or lawyers. Foster parenting is not always easy, but it can be rewarding.

 
There are many rewards to being a foster parent. You help lift a child’s spirit. Being a foster child can be a scary time. Many children in the foster system have experienced abuse. It can put a strain on the start of your relationship, but don’t give up. Your constant love and support can rebuild their hope and self-esteem. By caring for a foster child you provide a safe environment for them to grow and thrive. When it does come time to part with your foster child that can be a hard experience. This is a normal feeling. Always remember that your help and guidance prepared them for their permanent home.

 
Whether you’re a parent or foster parent it’s important to know that you don’t have to go at it alone. Home Visiting is a program that helps you learn parenting techniques and practices. Your home visitor provides an educational experience for the entire family.  They answer your questions, provide healthcare resources, and prepare your child for school. Enroll in Home Visiting today. It’s something you can do to set your child up for a lifetime of success. Learn more about this free program by dialing the 2-1-1 Help Me Grow helpline today!