What are the prerequisites to becoming a foster parent?
To become a foster parent, one must
- Be willing to undergo a medical
- Provide two persons who can comment on their suitability and readiness to receive and care for a child
- Undergo a period of training by the children’s officer from the Child Protection and Family Services Agency (CPFSA) [formerly the Child Development Agency (CDA)] in order to become familiar with caring for children in a manner which would promote his or her growth and development and satisfy the CPFSA’s expectations. The foster parent would also have the opportunity to voice to the officer his/her expectations of the agency
- Be willing to be supervised by a social worker via regular follow-up visits to the foster home to determine that the child’s well-being is being taken care of
- Be prepared to allow the foster child to maintain contact with his or her biological parents or relatives and allow for the reintegration of the child once a recommendation to that effect has been made by the social worker
What is the State’s responsibility?
Once your application has been approved and the foster care begins, the Government offers a monthly allowance towards maintenance of each foster child, as well as fees fir clothing, books, school fees and medical bills where necessary. Likewise, it is expected that the foster parent would supplement this to meet the needs of the child in keeping with the Child Care and Protection Act 2004
For more information about foster care in Jamaica, the application process, forms and FAQ, visit this link on the CPFSA website: Foster Care
Source: Child Protection and Family Services Agency. Published in The Gleaner 7/21/08