This post needs no introduction. But in the SchoolHouse Rock’s spirit – “Knowledge Is Power!”
Lie #1. The purpose of foster care is to provide permanent homes for children.
Fact: The purpose of foster care is to provide a temporary home for children until their family can be stabilize.
Lie #2. Only younger adults can be foster parents.
Fact: Foster parents must be at least 21 years of age but there is no maximum age limit. Good physical, emotional, and mental health are required to become a foster parent.
Lie #3. You must be married to be a foster parent.
Fact: You can be married, single, divorced or separated.
Lie #4. You must own your own home to be a foster parent.
Fact: You may live in an apartment or rent a home. Your residence must pass a home inspection and have adequate bedroom space.
Lie #5. Only families that are wealthy can be foster parents.
Fact: You must be financially stable and able to meet your household expenses. You will receive a monthly subsidy check to help with the cost of caring for a foster child.
Lie #6. Only urban areas need foster parents.
Fact: All areas in Missouri need foster families willing and able to care for a child.
Lie #7. Once you adopt through foster care the biological parent can take the child back.
Fact: Once parental rights are terminated the parents have no further recourse for gaining custody of the child.
Lie #8. Adopting a child from foster care is expensive.
Fact: Adopting children from foster care can be virtually free. Children who are in foster care and who are adopted from foster care receive free health insurance. Foster parents receive a monthly payment to offset food, clothing, activities, etc. while the child is in foster care and at a slightly lower rate when the child is adopted into their home.
Lie #9. All children in foster care have some kind of physical, mental, or emotional handicap; that’s why they are classified as “special needs”.
Fact: The term “special needs” in the foster care system can mean that the child is older, a minority or requires placement with his/her siblings.
Lie #10. Children in foster care have too much “baggage”.
Fact: This is perhaps the biggest myth off all. Children in foster care- just like all children-have enormous potential to thrive given love, patience and a stable environment. Former U.S Senator Ben Campbell and Minnesota Viking Dante Culpepper were both foster children who were adopted by caring adults.