The 2013 Foster Parent Survey Report has a lot to say
February 5, 2015
Foster parents care about the kids in their care. This should not be news to anyone, but in case it is you might consider reading the 2013 Foster Parent Survey Report. The Office of Children’s Services heard from 464 foster families throughout Alaska about why they serve as foster parents, what they need from OCS to be able to do a better job caring for our state’s foster children and how they work to meet the needs of children in their care.
The Survey found that 55% of foster parents are caring for children they are related to, 81% of them participated in training provided by the Alaska Center for Resource Families and, of those, 75% found that the training prepared them for providing care.
Most foster parents reported that they “believe that caring for children is important and rewarding” (68%), it is important to provide care for children (60%), and that “caring for children is my way of contributing to my community” (50%). Wonderfully, 26% said that they were interested in adopting a foster child!
However, foster parents want more information on children’s needsbefore they are placed in their homes and believe that they can contribute more to decision making about children in their care. Additionally, case worker turnover is a challenge for everyone involved as is the huge workload of case workers which leads to long lag times responding to phone calls and emails.
The 2013 Foster Parent Survey affirms what Foster Kids First believes: those in the foster care system truly have kids best interests at heart but that we can do better.