Therapeutic Foster Care

Hillcrest Medical Center is seeking families willing to provide homes for children ages 3 through 18 who need a safe environment to live in due to a family crisis.

Therapeutic Foster Care (TFC) is a program that specifically trains foster parents to deal with children who have more emotional and behavioral needs than kids in conventional foster care. Foster parents receive 41 hours of pre-training and go through a process of certification in order to become TFC parents. This includes an in-depth home study, safety checks of the home environment, and FBI/OSBI background checks. Once a couple becomes certified, a child is matched with the family for placement. The child receives weekly individual and family therapy with his/her foster family and a monthly group rehabilitation session with other TFC children/youth. TFC parents also attend a monthly training and support meeting with other TFC parents.

The average length of time a child is in foster care is 12-18 months. At that time the child is either reunified with their biological parents or other family members, moved to a conventional foster home or adopted.

Qualifications

 

  • Ability to provide for physical and emotional needs of child.
  • Ability to recognize and meet individual needs.
  • Ability to accept a child into your home as well as to let him/her go.
  • Ability to understand and show acceptance of natural parents.
  • Ability to work as a team member with HMC, DHS, and school staff.
  • Adequate physical and mental health as certified by a physician.
  • Ability to provide the minimum of a bed and private space or belongings for each child.
  • An adequate income for support of own family.
  • Married, Widowed, Divorced for at least 1 year to allow time to build stability in the home and relationships

Training

All therapeutic foster parents are required to have 41 hours of pre-service training plus CPR and First Aid. Training is provided by Foster Care Services and addresses issues on: grief and loss, natural and logical consequences, developmental stages, stress management, and other areas relevant to the care of children in therapeutic foster care.

Reimbursement

Reimbursement varies from $30/day to $40/day depending on the age of the child and length of service with Foster Care Services.

Foster Parent Responsibilities

Parents are to provide for the physical, emotional and social needs of children in a "substitute" family setting. Their responsibilities are as follows:

To the youth (age 3-19):

  • Provide a safe and comfortable environment for the youth to live in with a separate bed and place for his/her belongings.
  • Provide for the youth’s basic physical and emotional needs as you would your own youth.
  • Provide for school attendance, monitor progress, note special needs and accomplishments.
  • Provide appropriate clothing.
  • Attend to medical and dental needs including regular checkups as well as attending to special needs.
  • Help the youth through the grieving and adjustment process that accompanies removal from his/her own home and placement.
  • Help the youth maintain a realistic relationship with his/her family through cooperation with visitation and active consideration to his/her feelings.
  • Provide recreational and enrichment activities that will promote healthy development.
  • Maintain a record in the form of a Life Book for the youth of his/her time in care, developmental milestones, photographs, report cards, etc.
  • Provide consistent and realistic discipline and guidance that is age appropriate and does not involve corporal punishment.
  • Allow the youth to practice in his/her religion of choice and not forcing the youth to attend your church.
  • Teach independent living skills that will assist the youth in becoming self-sufficient.
  • Ensure that the youth attends weekly therapy sessions and monthly group therapy sessions.
  • Instruct the youth or provide educational opportunities equal to 2 hours per quarter in chemical dependency prevention.

To The Agency:

  • Keep the agency informed of problems and progress of the foster child, including immediate notification if youth runs away.
  • Keep the agency informed of changes in your home including change in address and phone number, deaths or departure of immediate family members, additions to family, notification before vacations, etc.
  • Be available for meetings with agency workers.
  • Attend monthly foster parent training sessions,earning at least 18 hours per year.
  • Be part of a quarterly case review/staffing.
  • Give 30 days written notice when requesting removal of a child.
  • Comply with state regulations and agency policies and procedures as outlined in the foster parents manual.
  • Turn in required monthly paperwork in a timely manner.

To Biological Parents:

  • Cooperate with visitation and assist the bio-parent by allowing time with the child and helping them feel comfortable during transition.
  • Help the child maintain a realistic perception and attitude towards bio-parents.

To Foster Parents’ Own Family:

  • Discuss the decision to foster openly with all members allowing everyone participation in decision to accept a particular child.
  • Make every effort to maintain usual lifestyle and relationships while providing foster care, including private time with own family members.
  • Help all members understand the impact a foster child may have on family routine, etc.
  • Prepare all members for the arrival of foster children, including discussion of the foster child’s special needs.

For more information, please contact:

Therapeutic Foster Care
1145 S Utica Pl, Suite 253
Tulsa, OK 74104
(918) 579-5955

(918) 579-5699 fax
e-mail us - link to jlbarnet@hillcrest.com