Have you ever spent your entire weekend rearranging the bedroom furniture in your home? When a new baby arrives, or a child graduates and moves out, bedroom changes usually follow.
If you are thinking about providing foster care to children, rearranging bedroom furniture can become a regular pastime. That is, if you are considering fostering boys and girls of various ages. If you are sticking to a narrow age range, and one gender, then you should not need to rearrange.
Have you ever wondered if you have room in your home and your heart for foster children?
Most foster care agencies will let families specify the age range and gender of children they are willing to accept. For example, a family could say, We will only accept up to three children at a time, from 0 to 2, boys or girls. Some senior foster parents, who are single, only accept teenagers of their same gender.
Space Requirements for Foster Care
Perhaps you have considered foster care, but you don’t think you have enough room in your home. Our state requires 40 square feet per child in a bedroom. Therefore, if your bedroom is 10×12 feet, that is 120 square feet, so you could legally have three children in that bedroom. Our state allows boys and girls under the age of five years to share the same bedroom. Once the children reach the age of five, bedrooms need to be gender specific. Our state even allows children under the age of three years to share a bedroom with the foster parents. However, they do need to have their own beds.
While this information is specific to our state, licensing requirements in the United States are very similar. If you are really interested, you could call an agency that provides foster care in your area and ask to speak to a licensing worker. Jot down some notes before you call so you remember to ask all of your questions.
Stay in Touch
It can hurt your heart when foster children leave your care. We are human. If you provide loving care to a child for several months chances are you may fall in love. You may grieve when your children leave your care. Consider meeting with the birth families while providing foster care to their children. Some parents will allow you to continue a relationship with thier children. You can take on an aunt or grandparent status in their family.
by Julia Fuller