Becoming a Foster Parent
The decision to become a foster parent is an important one. There are many families with children who are struggling and those are the children who are in need of a safe and loving environment.
If you are interested in learning more about becoming a foster parent and you are 21 years of age, the first step is to contact a local CPS office.
- If you are from the Sioux Falls or Rapid City area, please call the following phone numbers to learn more about becoming a foster parent.
- A packet containing information about foster parenting will be mailed to those requesting it.
- Once contact has been made, a Family Services Specialist will explain the needs of children in foster care and outline the requirements for becoming a foster parent.
- The next step is called a home consultation. A Family Services Specialist will come to your home and discuss the responsibilities and requirements for becoming a foster parent in more detail and you will have an opportunity to have your questions answered. During this visit, a home safety checklist is also completed.
- Then you will have to attend PRIDE (Parent's Resource for Information, Development and Education) training. During this time, 30 hours of orientation and three or four home visits are also required. Learn more about the PRIDE program.
- A final assessment is done once training has been completed to determine if you meet or are in compliance with licensing requirements. Any needs for continuing education and enhancement of your foster parenting skills will also be discussed with you.
- When the training, home consultations and paperwork are complete and a determination is made that you are in compliance with licensing requirements, a family foster care license may be issued. This license must be renewed annually and may be done following a review to determine continued compliance with licensing requirements.
- A family foster home licensed by a licensed Child Placement Agency or the State of South Dakota may be licensed for a maximum of six children, including the foster parent's children living in the home who are under 18 years of age.
- When the licensing Family Services Specialist is informed of a child needing a licensed placement resource, the Family Services Specialist will match the needs of the child with the strengths of the licensed foster families to select the foster family who can best meet the needs of the child.