Why Become a Foster Parent?

Through no fault of their own, many innocent children in Calgary are without suitable homes. By becoming a foster parent, you can provide a safe, stable, and nurturing environment for these innocent foster children. You'll be helping children who can't help themselves by giving them hope, ambition, and an improved chance to succeed in the future. Even if you can only foster one child, that's one life you will help turn around.

What are Foster Children Like?
Foster children come from all cultural backgrounds, and can be any age from newborn to 18. They may also have behavioural, emotional, or learning and physical disabilities.

Some foster children have been mentally or physically abused. Others have been abandoned, or can no longer stay with their families because their natural parents don't have the skills to look after them. But almost always, these children are hurt, confused, angry, frightened, and in desperate need of care and stability.

What are the Responsibilities of a Foster Parent?
As a foster parent, you are responsible for the child's daily care - following a plan, meeting his or her special needs, and recording your observations of the child's behaviour and progression to be shared with members of the Children's Services team.

In some cases it is important for members of the child's natural family to continue playing a role in the child's development. As such, it is important that you are supportive in such circumstances.

You must also be prepared for the ups and downs of fostering. Because of what these children have experienced, they may go through stages of anger, depression, frustration, or sadness. It is important that you remain sensitive to their experiences and temperaments, although it is also important to set limits and model appropriate behavior. But most importantly, be patient, caring, and understanding of what these children have gone through.

How Will We Help You?
As a foster parent, you will be provided with ongoing training and support from Calgary and Area Child and Family Services Authority. The Calgary and District Foster Parents Association will also provide you with informal and formal support. Additionally, you will have the assistance of your foster care support worker, and access to your foster child's social worker, should any issues arise.

You will also receive a per diem to cover all the child's expenses including food, clothing, shelter, babysitting, and other allowances. Expenses such as medical, dental, optical, and prescription drugs will be covered directly by Children's Services.

Foster Parent Myths

Foster Parenting Myth #385: Every child is a fountain of joy.
Myth #386: every child is an endless supply of misery.

In reality, every foster child has individual strengths and challenges. By matching each child to the ability, experience, and comfort level of their foster family, we make it easier and more rewarding for everyone - it's just one more reason to consider becoming a foster parent.

Foster Parenting Myth #614: The flood gate is your front door.
In reality, our goal is to achieve a comfortable, low-stress environment for every foster family and foster child. So whether it's a few children or just one child, any help you can give will make all the difference to our foster kids.

Foster Parenting Myth #428: Applicants must be rich, married, mortgage-free and direct descendants of British Royalty.
In reality, foster parents can be from any cultural background, single or common-law couples, homeowners or renters, middle class, of modest income, or even retired. Knowing that you don't have to be an impossibly perfect super-mom is just one more reason to consider becoming a foster parent.

Foster Parenting Myth #73: We'll throw you to the wolves with nothing but a half-hearted "good luck."
In reality, all foster parents are provided with ongoing training and assistance for any issue that might arise. From access to a Foster Care Support Worker, to allowances for all major and miscellaneous fees, we're here to help you every step of the way. It's just one more reason to consider becoming a foster parent.

Foster Parenting Myth #824: No one cares what age or gender you would prefer.
In reality, we always take into account your wishes and what fits best with your family before placing a child in your care. Making everyone comfortable with the foster situation ensures the most welcoming experience for the foster child. It's just one more reason to consider becoming a foster parent.

Foster Parenting Myth #216: They're all perfect little angels.
Myth #217: They're all mischievous little troublemakers.

In reality, foster children run the whole spectrum of personalities. By finding the right fit between the challenges of the child and the abilities of the foster family, we make life better for everyone. It's just one more reason to consider becoming a foster parent.

Foster Parenting Myth #154: You'll get diapers, sex questions, and trig homework all on the first day.
In reality, we don't expect our foster parents to hit the ground running. That's why each foster child will be matched to suit the skill level and time commitment of the foster family. So whether your foster child is a newborn baby, an active toddler, or an awkward teen, we'll be there to support you.

Foster Parenting Myth #592: It's a great way to get rich.
Myth #593: It's a guaranteed way to go broke.

In reality, foster parents will receive a per diem to cover all the children's expenses. Which means foster kids get everything they need without spending any of the foster family's finances. It's just one more reason to consider becoming a foster parent.

The #1 Foster Parenting Myth: That someone like you can't be a foster parent.
It starts by contacting us. Find out how you can help a foster child.