Foster Care

GAP Ministries, a social service nonprofit serving Southern Arizona since 1999, stands in the GAP for those in need in three core areas: Family, Community and Ministry. We believe people need hope, help and healing to navigate life, and through the practical expression of God’s love we can impact their lives with destiny. We recruit, license, and certify individuals and families who wish to provide an excellent temporary foster or permanent home for abused and/or neglected children. Bringing a child into your home can be challenging. Once you are licensed and have children placed in your home, our team is here to partner with you.
We will provide you with the ongoing education and support you need to be successful with your fostering experience. Training classes held in our main office in Northwest Tucson, childcare and dinner provided.

Scroll down to learn more about the rewards of becoming a foster parent, or click here to learn about our SPLASH program

 

Becoming A Foster Parent

  • Basic Requirements

    Pima County children need your love, your help and your home. You don’t need a college degree, lots of money or a big fancy house to become a foster, or adoptive parent to a child, teen or sibling group. Foster parents are people just like you! They are married, single, divorced or widowed.

    Basic requirements include:

    • At least 21 years of age
    • Legal U.S. and Arizona resident
    • Apartment dweller, renter or home-owner
    • Able to pass a fingerprint-based criminal history records check
    • Earn sufficient to meet your family's needs
    • Pass a home inspection
    • Complete 30 hours of PS-MAPP training

    Basic Requirements

  • Attend an Orientation

    RSVP at 520-392-8469 or foster@gapmin.com

    When: Second Monday       of every month
    Time: 6:00–7:00pm
    Location: GAP Ministries

    When you are ready to get started, please attend an orientation.

    Orientations are offered as group sessions or individual meetings depending on your location in the state. At the orientation you will learn:

    • Who are the children in need of homes?
    • What are the requirements to be a foster or adoptive parent?
    • What are the roles and responsibilities of foster or adoptive parents?
    • What is the process to become a foster or adoptive parent?
    • What supports are available for foster and adoptive parents?

    Keep in mind that this is a process that will take time as we get to know you and you reflect
    on your ability to care for children in foster care. This is the time and place for you to
    ask questions.

    Attend an Orientation

  • Attend Training

    CPR Training

    Training Schedule

    Parenting a child in foster care in not the same as parenting a child to whom you have given birth. Training provides you with tools and challenges you to grow and develop so you can parent children who have been neglected and abused. While you may have previous parenting experience, parenting children who have been neglected and abused is different.

    The training will also help you decide whether foster and adoptive parenting is right for you and your family. Is now the right time? What type of child can I successfully parent? What are some of the special considerations of parenting siblings?

    The entire training takes 30 hours to complete. Foster parents are vital members of the child's team. This training provides information about the roles and responsibilities of all the team members.

    Foster families are also required to pass a CPR/First Aid class. If you are not already certified we can help you find a class to take. CLICK HERE for class schedule.

    Preregistration Required

    Attend Training

  • Family Home Study & Safety Evaluation

    Your Family Specialist will ask you for information necessary to determine your fitness to serve as a foster parent and your ability to comply with foster care requirements.  Your specialist will submit a home study with this information to the Office of Licensing, Certification, and Regulation (OLCR) with a recommendation about whether you should be licensed or not.

    Your Family Specialist will:

    • Personally interview you and all the members of your household
    • Determine if you are physically, mentally and emotionally able to care for children
    • Obtain personal references for you
    • Verify your financial condition
    • Verify that you live in an apartment or house that is a safe environment for children (home ownership is not required)
    • Verify that you have passed the fingerprinting and criminal history and DCS records check process

    Family Home Study &
    Safety Evaluation

  • Placement

    Once you are a licensed foster parent we will work with DCS to identify what children you wish to parent:

    • One child or more
    • Siblings
    • Boys, girls or both
    • Ages of children

    As a foster parent, it is important to make an informed decision before a child comes to live with you. The following information may help you make your decision:

    • The medical, dental, behavioral health and educational needs of the child
    • The visitation plan for the child with parents, siblings and other family members (if applicable
    • Transportation needs
    • Placement history (if applicable)
    • Any special services the child receives

    Placement

Training

Training to become foster/adoptive parent

GAP will be accepting referrals for AZPS-MAPP, Deciding Together training for families interested in Foster Care and/or Adoption and unlicensed Kinship families. GAP Training Specialists are knowledgeable in the AZPS-MAPP/DT Training curriculum and methodology. AZPS-MAPP/DT is a process to prepare foster parents to make an informed decision about becoming a resource parent and help participants decide if their expectations and abilities match the realities of fostering and adopting. This on-going assessment provides additional support to increase foster applicants’ likelihood of success in completing AZPS-MAPP/DT and becoming licensed.

Training for the care of medically complex children

GAP also offers an advanced training for foster and adoptive providers that are interested in Caring for a Medically Complex Child (CMCC). A medically complex child is a “child with special healthcare needs as determined by the Department of Child Safety and includes children who have or at risk for a chronic physical or developmental conditions”. CMCC can only be offered to providers that are licensed with the State of Arizona. The training curriculum provides families with the following:

  • an introduction to DCS policies and procedures for caring for a child with complex medical needs,
  • review of some of the most common medical conditions for children, and
  • resources available to assist in the child’s care.

Our goal is to increase the number of providers that are able to care for children with Medically Complex needs in a home instead of children having to remain in hospital care.

Resources

These are some forms and documents that are useful for foster families

For additional licensing forms or forms for foster parents, please visit DES FORMS FOR FOSTER FAMILIES. If you can’t find what you need, please contact your licensing worker.

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