Becoming a foster parent is a great responsibility that requires preparation and training to deal with the behaviors of foster children. The need for licensed foster homes in the U.S., including the state of Georgia, is constantly increasing and taking the steps to become licensed is a way to help children in your state and give them a supportive environment and a place that they can safely call home.
The basic requirements for potential foster parents in Georgia are: Be financially able to meet basic needs; undertake a medical examination and drug screen; complete a two-hour orientation session; complete a home evaluation and complete a 20-hour pre-service training course. Potential foster parents are also required to complete CPR, Water Safety and First Aid training. A single foster parents must be 25 years old and at least 10 years older than the foster child. Married foster parents must be 10 years older than the foster child.
The legal requirements include a state and federal criminal background check, fingerprint check, Sexual Offenders Registry check and character references.
Most homes are appropriate for foster care including single-family homes, apartments and town homes. There must be a bed available for the foster child and in some circumstances the foster child will require his own room. Although most foster children only bring a few possessions they still require at least a dresser draw and adequate closet space. Home safety issues will be discussed once you are within the application process.
Requirements specific to Georgia are that you must have a current Georgia driver's license and social security card.
Each foster/adoption agency or association may have additional requirements. For example, Giving Children A Chance of Georgia requires that prospective foster parents possess health insurance and undergo a psychological evaluation.