The best place for a child is in a home.
Being a foster parent is an incredibly rewarding experience and is a valuable contribution to children and families in need. As a foster parent, you provide a safe, loving, nurturing home for a child in crisis and you play a critical role in helping the child move forward with strength and stability—a role that can make a world of difference for that child and for generations to come.
Casa de los Niños provides the best experience for foster families and those seeking adoption certification by providing you with timely information, emotional support and encouragement.
Becoming a foster parent takes time and commitment, and we are here to help.
Foster families play a vital role in helping children who have experienced trauma by:
- providing a stable, loving home
- supporting the biological family to help them heal and grow
- working in partnership with other professionals to meet the child’s unique needs
- patiently addressing the child’s medical, behavioral and emotional needs
- attending trainings to develop and maintain skills relevant to foster care
We welcome single and two-parent families and have no restrictions based on religious beliefs, ethnicity or sexual orientation. We provide extensive support to families who are raising relative children.
Steps to becoming a foster parent
- Single, married or in a relationship— if married both parties must complete all requirements.
- At least 21 years old (18 years old for adoption)
- Able to pass FBI and local criminal background checks and obtain Level 1 Fingerprint Clearance Card (for all adults in house)
- Lawfully present in the United States (citizen, legal resident or proof of other authorization)
- Able to be medically qualified by a health professional
- Meeting current living expenses
- Any children in home must have a bedroom and their own individual bed
These Questions to Consider can help you think about some of the factors involved in becoming a foster family.
Attend a Meet & Greet
Fourth Tuesday of the month from 5:00 – 7:00 pm (no RSVP needed)
Casa de los Niños
1101 N. 4th Ave
Tucson, AZ 85705
Schedule a Meeting
Complete our online contact form or call 520-326-8250
The Application Process
Foster parents in Arizona must be approved through the state foster licensing process, which includes:
Training*, Health & Safety Inspection, and a Home Study
These three components occur simultaneously and can take anywhere from three to four months to complete, depending on you and your availability.
*Training is not required for adoptive parents, but is highly encouraged.
Foster Parent pre-service training consists of 11 online courses that can be completed from your own home and 15 hours of in-class instruction. You must have a valid DPS Level 1 Fingerprint Card to enroll in training.
- The child welfare team
- Parent-child attachment
- Understanding behaviors in foster children
- Cultural issues in parenting
- Child development
- Supporting normalcy for youth in care
- Trauma-Informed Parenting
Foster Parent College Training Dates:
For more information or to register please call (520) 326-8250 ext. 13112.
Wednesdays – 6:00pm-9:00pm
February 5 – March 11
March 25 – April 29
May 13 – June 17
July 1 – August 12
September 9 – October 14
October 28 – December 9
Saturdays – 9:00am-12:00pm
January 11 – February 15
February 29 – April 5
April 18 – May 16
May 30 – June 27
July 18 – August 22
September 12 – October 17
October 24 – December 5
Provide proof that you have current CPR & First Aid certification
If you wish to care for children with medical needs,
please read these additional training requirements:
To qualify to provide this type of foster care service you must have:
(Only one person in the household is required to meet these requirements but BOTH must take the training)
- at least one year’s experience being a licensed foster parent
- licensed or certified as healthcare professional such a doctor, nurse or CNA
- three months’ successful experience in child welfare, foster care, health care, education or related profession as approved by the Office of Licensing and Regulation (OLR)
- a bachelor’s or graduate degree in health care
If you wish to care for children or adults with developmental needs,
please read these additional training requirements:
Complete Division of Developmental Disabilities training which includes approximately 24 hours of training on these and other topics:
- Article 9
- Prevention & support
- Introduction to four developmental disabilities
- Incident reporting /preventing and reporting abuse and neglect
- ISP and habilitation process
- Medication training
- Managing members’ finances
- Member-specific training
Child Development Home providers must complete Foster Parent College Blended Curriculum Pre-Service Training
II. Health and Safety Inspection
Your Casa de los Niños licensing worker will help you prepare your home for the Life Safety Inspection. You will be provided with guidelines and given recommendations to get your home ready for OLR/OLCR inspection. This inspection is to ensure that there are no health or safety risks for children that would be placed in your home. It is up to you to purchase the items required, such as smoke detectors, carbon monoxide detectors, fire extinguishers, first aid kits, and more. Your dogs must have proof of current rabies vaccination. If you have a pool, spa, Jacuzzi, guns, or any other type of weapons there are specific requirements we must ensure are in place before requesting the final inspection by OLR/OLCR.
III. Home Study Process
During your home study process, your Casa de los Niños licensing worker will interview you and your family members and collect documents and records. Your licensing worker will ask you very personal questions about your relationships in order to assess your ability to parent children who have experienced trauma. It is important that you answer honestly. You will be given an assessment guide to assist you in answering some of the questions. Your children will also be interviewed as part of the home study, and your pets will be assessed for their temperament. You will be asked to provide copies of verifications of important documents including birth certificates, immunization records, driving history and more. This process requires at least four hours of face-to-face time for you and your licensing worker.
After your home has passed the health and safety inspection, your home study is complete, and training is done, your information will be submitted to the Office of Licensing and Regulation (OLR) or Office of Licensing, Certification & Regulation (OLCR – for developmental homes) for final approval. OLR/OLCR will complete an internal review of your completed home study and may ask for additional information or clarification. You and your licensing worker will work together to provide requested information. OLR/OLCR will then determine if your license is issued or denied. Patience is not only a virtue through the process but a requirement!
Support from your Licensing Worker
Once you are licensed, you will have a licensing worker who will support you.
Your licensing worker can:
- Attend meetings with you, such as Child Family Team meetings, court, Foster Care Review Board meetings, and more
- Help you advocate for the child or adult in your care
- Provide ongoing training and resources
- Provide fun and informative family activities for you to meet other foster parents
- Provide emergency on-call support