Opinions

Petty: Change someone’s world through adopting or fostering

Posted 4/27/22

Arizona’s Children Association is the largest foster care provider in the state, training and supporting foster care families who open their hearts and homes to vulnerable children while their …

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Opinions

Petty: Change someone’s world through adopting or fostering

Posted

Arizona’s Children Association is the largest foster care provider in the state, training and supporting foster care families who open their hearts and homes to vulnerable children while their biological families are on the mend.

AzCA collaborates with adoption placing agencies to provide a variety of adoption-related services for those seeking to adopt internationally, privately, and from the foster care system.

When becoming interested in foster care and adoption services, it is important to be aware of the differences between foster care and adoption. There are two different avenues, but they support the same goal, helping a child in need.

The parameters of comparison between fostering and adoption are duration of stay, geographical scope, and responsibilities. In foster care, a child is placed with a family for as long as the state deems fit, while adoption is forever. When fostering a child, they must be placed in the same state as their biological parents — for adoption there are no geographical barriers.

Below are three steps to foster care.

  1. Review the requirements: Before beginning the initial process, it is important that prospective foster parents review the requirements necessary to foster. The requirements range from age of applicant, marital status, financial stability, health and availability.
  2. Attend an information session: Prospective foster parents are required to attend an information session with our agency to gain more information about AzCA in particular. This information session will discuss the needs of children in care and what requirements are necessary to foster. The information session will walk potential foster parents through the process of licensing and certification and provide them with resources and support.
  3. Background check, home study, home inspection and training: Foster families must be approved by the state through the foster licensing process, which includes a background check, interviews, required training hours, fingerprinting, and home study. This process typically takes four to six months to complete and begins with an initial visit to the home to review general requirements, paperwork and training.

AzCA collaborates with adoption placing agencies to provide a variety of adoption related services for those seeking to adopt internationally, privately, and from the foster care system.

AzCA’s adoption-related services include:

  • Recruitment, assessment, training, and supervision of adoptive families for children in Arizona’s foster care system;
  • Interstate compact services for children placed in Arizona by other county or state jurisdictions;
  • Stepparent adoptions;
  • Grandparent and family member adoptions;
  • Home study and post-placement services for attorney-facilitated adoptions, stepparent adoption, relative adoption and international placing agencies

If you are interested in adoption or fostering, please visit: arizonaschildren.org/foster-adopt/.

About Arizona’s Children Association

For 100 years, Arizona’s Children Association has stayed true to “Protecting Children, Empowering Youth, Strengthening Families,” serving more than 40,000 children, individuals and families in all 15 counties each year. It is one of the oldest and largest statewide child welfare and behavioral health nonprofit agencies in Arizona.

Learn more at www.ArizonasChildren.org.

Joy Petty is director of foster care and adoptions at Arizona’s Children Association.

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