AmeriPsych kids

Have you thought about becoming a foster parent?
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Become A Foster/Adoptive Parent

The need for foster and adoptive homes has never been greater. Consider these facts:

  • Currently in Arizona, there are more than 10,000 children in out-of-home care, due to abuse or neglect.
  • Many of these children are in group homes, while their parents learn the skills needed to reunify the family.
  • For more than 50 years, various studies have shown that children do better in family-like settings than in group homes or shelters.
  • Studies also show that children placed in group homes are more likely to be involved in the juvenile justice system, than those placed in foster home settings.

AmeriPsych can get you licensed to be a foster care provider or have you certified to be an adoptive parent.

General Requirements to be a Foster Parent:

  • At least 21 years of age
  • Criminal background records check and child/adult abuse check
  • Medical statement of good general health of household members over the age of 18
  • Safe living environment with adequate space for a new child
  • Attendance at a specialized pre-service training as preparation for foster parenting

What Do Foster Parents Do?

Foster parents are responsible to:
  • Keep the child safe, and meet his/her emotional and physical needs
  • Share information about the child with Child Protective Services (CPS) staff, biological parents/relatives, and other professionals working with the child
  • Meet CPS and your licensing specialist for home visits regularly
  • Take the child to medical, dental, and other appointments as necessary
  • Help transport the child to/from visitations with biological parents, if needed
  • Maintain documentation of the children’s appointments, behaviors, and records
  • Maintain some contact with the biological parents to help keep them involved with their child.  This could included letters or notes,  telephone calls, or visits in person at the CPS office or other safe location

Adoption Certification and Training

Families waiting for a child to adopt will find friendly, knowledgeable staff at AmeriPsych ready and willing to guide you through the journey of certification. Our services include parenting training, assistance in completing certification requirements, training, and aftercare. We will provide you and the new addition to your family with the best possible tools for continued success.

Getting Started

Once you’ve decided to proceed, you can begin completing the licensing application and home study while attending a 10-week training course required by the State of Arizona.  The training, called PS-MAPP, helps map the way for you to parent children who started life in a family that is probably very different from yours.  These kids have had experiences which require a unique parenting very different than how you may parent your own children. After you’ve completed your classes, licensing packet, and home study, you’re on your way to being a licensed foster or certified adoptive parent.

Steps to becoming an adoptive parent:
1. Application
2. Pre-Service Training (PSMAPP)
3. Home Study process (which may include background checks, a physician statement, and a home inspection)
4. Selection by the Department of Economic Security (DES)
5. Presentation of the child and his needs
6. Visitation between you and the child
7. Placement of the child in your home for a minimum of six months before finalization
8. Finalization

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