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Requirements and Training to become a Foster Parent with Youth Villages

Youth Villages recruits foster parents in Tennessee and Mississippi. All Youth Villages foster parents must:

- Be legally employed or have verifiable monthly income above the poverty line
- Be single or legally married for at least one year
- Have homeowner's or renter's insurance
- Have a current driver license
- Have car insurance
- Have reliable transportation
- Be at least 25 years of age
- Pass a background check
- Complete Youth Villages' foster parent training
- Complete a home study

It usually takes about six weeks to complete foster parent certification. To complete the application process, potential foster parents must:

  • Be interviewed by staff to make sure they meet requirements.
  • Complete 45 hours of training to be certified. 30 hours of additional training are required each year to remain certified. During the training, parents learn how to help children with emotional and behavioral problems. Parents are taught discipline practices and specific ways to help the child.
  • Complete a home study and safety inspection.
  • Pass a criminal background check and provide positive references.

Foster Parent Orientation

Your first step toward becoming a foster parent at Youth Villages is to attend an orientation session. The orientation is an easy way to learn more about foster parenting without making any commitment. During the informational meeting, Youth Villages' staff will answer all of your questions about foster parenting and the general needs of Youth Villages' children. Current foster parents will also be at the meeting to talk about their experiences. After the orientation, if you decide to become a foster parent, a series of evening training sessions will be scheduled. Youth Villages' staff will help you every step of the way in gaining your certification to be a foster parent.

Contact a recruiter to find out when the next orientation meeting happens in your area or schedule a private orientation.

PATH (Parents as Tender Healer) trainings

To become a certified foster parent, you must attend PATH training classes. Training materials and dinner are provided at no cost to participants. The PATH training classes help prospective foster parents decide whether providing foster, adoptive or kinship care to children is appropriate for them. PATH is based on the belief that children grow and develop better in families, where they can build lasting relationships. The early trauma experienced by many children in the child welfare system has a lifelong impact on how they feel about themselves, their ability to trust and their willingness to build relationships. Foster families will address issues that are different from those faced by families that are formed by birth. This curriculum addresses these core issues in a way that prepares prospective resource families for their new and complex role. The skills needed to be a successful resource parent differs from those needed to rear children from birth. Everything in this training including the written material, video presentations, in-class assignments, role-plays, class discussions and interactions, as well as the homework, is designed to help resource parents begin to understand the children and develop the skills needed to parent them successfully.

Contact a recruiter for a class schedule.

About Us
Youth Villages is a private nonprofit organization dedicated to helping emotionally and behaviorally troubled children and their families live successfully. We help more than 22,000 children and families each year from more than 20 states and Washington, D.C. Our Evidentiary Family Restoration® approach involves intensive work with the child and family, a focus on measuring outcomes, keeping children in the community whenever safely possible, and providing accountability to families and funders. The EFR approach produces lasting success for children with success rates twice that of traditional services at one-third the cost of traditional care.
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