If you are thinking about becoming a foster parent but are not yet comfortable with the commitment of seven days a week, 24 hours a day, consider becoming an alternative care provider or respite care provider.
Focus on Youth, Inc. considers foster parents to be a valuable, precious resource. Statistics prove that taking periodic breaks from foster care helps prevent foster parent "burnout," which helps stabilize the child's placement and decrease disruptions. By providing alternative care or respite care, foster parent(s) can have a planned break. Alternative care or respite care also supports the foster home in case of a foster family emergency such as a medical emergency or death in the family.
Alternative care is similar to babysitting services for youth in foster care and can be either short or for a few days.
Respite care is defined as alternative care provided for a child placed in a treatment foster home that lasts more than 24 consecutive hours. Because respite care is for youth in a specialized foster home, there are additional requirements to become a respite care provider.
The requirements and process to provide alternative care or respite are quite similar to those of foster parenting.
Basic requirements for both Alternative Care and Respite Care
- Completed Application
- BCI&I* fingerprinting - a criminal background check with the state of Ohio
- FBI* fingerprinting - a federal criminal background check with the FBI
- Local Crime Check*
- County Crime Check*
- Driver's License (if transporting children)
- Proof of Insurance
- Bureau of Motor Vehicles Check* for safe driving records (no more than 5 points to be cleared for transporting youth)
- Brief Safety Audit when respite is done in your home.
- Brief Interview
- "Required Notification" - an acknowledgement that you have a clear criminal record and you will notify us if you are ever charged with a crime
- Pet Vaccination Form
Asterisk indicates must be updated every 4 years
Additional Requirements for Respite Providers
- Two Additional References
- 12 hours of Respite Training provided through Focus on Youth, Inc.
- Respite Orientation (3 hrs. scheduled on an as-needed basis)
- Child Abuse or Neglect & the Impact on Child Development (3 hrs. Pre-Placement)
- Attachment, Separation, and Placement (3 hrs. Pre-Placement)
- Discipline & Behavior Management (3 hrs. Pre-Placement)