Five Quick Advantages for Foster parents who stay home.

Some advantages to be a stay at home Foster parent in Virginia

Advantages of Staying Home as a Foster Parent

Do I have to stay home if I become a Foster parent in Virginia?

In the United States, you do not have to stay at home with your children from foster care. You can choose if you would like to be a stay-at-home parent, work from home, or work outside of the home.

But there are a few advantages for foster families and adoptive families whose parents do decide to stay at home.

Below are five important benefits to be noted:

1. Avoid daycare fees​

If you decide to become a stay-at-home mom or a stay-at-home dad, you will save money on daycare fees. You wouldn't need to send the children to daycare during the day if you could care for them yourself.

You'll also be saving on the hidden fees associated with daycare. This can include transportation costs for picking them up and dropping them off. Also, you'll save more time and money than would otherwise be spent on packing lunches for your child.

Sometimes the Virginia Department of Social Services can pay for daycare fees for your foster children. However, there is no guarantee that every family will get this support.

2. Can attend appointments and meetings for the child​

Caring for a child in foster care in Virginia requires you to participate in many different meetings. These meetings are usually mandatory to ensure that you and the child have your needs met.

These meetings can include family planning meetings, family assessments, planning team meetings, therapy sessions, and support groups. On top of that, children also need regular doctor and dental appointments.

It can be challenging for foster parents who work outside the home to attend all these meetings. Yet, these meetings will become more manageable if you're a stay-at-home parent. It will likely be easier for you to schedule and keep track of all these different responsibilities.

3. You're already present if they get sick or need assistance​

No matter how well we protect and safeguard our children, they will get ill or need our help at some point. This can include having an accident at school or being too sick to get out of bed.

There are also medically fragile children in the foster care system. These children may need consistent supervision and care to ensure they are healthy and safe.

Stay-at-home parents will have immediate access to their children if anything like this happens. They will be able to respond to their children faster or get them to a medical professional more quickly.

4. More time spent with your foster child (give more love and supervision to the foster child)

In line with the last point, staying home will give you more opportunities to provide them with love and caring supervision. Spending quality time with your children, especially foster children, will help your relationship blossom.

Additionally, you may have a child that requires constant supervision. This can include children who are young, medically fragile, or are having difficulty with their mental and emotional well-being.

If you have a younger child, you'll also be more than likely to observe the essential milestones, such as their first step or loss of teeth.

5. You'll form a bond quicker with them

Children who enter foster care are there because they were not adequately cared for by their biological parents. This could mean your foster child has suffered physical, sexual, emotional, or mental abuse or neglect.

These children need a loving, compassionate, and safe environment. If you stay in the home with the child, you will have more opportunities to prove to your foster child that you are a safe space for them.

One thing is sure, whether you choose to stay home, foster full-time, work full-time, or do respite care, there is a need for your love and supervision in the foster care system, and we welcome all versions of it. Contact us here at ESP to find out what will best fit your and the child's life and see how you can merge the two. 

My name is Vincent Ellis White, and I am a Home Study Specialist at Extra Special Parents (ESP), a licensed foster care treatment agency in Virginia. My tasks within my ESP role include the following:

1: I train potential foster parents and guide them as they navigate the road to certification to become licensed foster parents.

2: I conduct home studies of likely foster parents, a critical part of the certification road.

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