Therapeutic Foster Care
Our foster care programs are designed to provide a stable and caring home environment for children who need to be placed outside their own homes. HSC provides free foster parent training, assistance with obtaining your foster home license, and 24-hour support once you have a child placed in your home.
What kind of children get placed in foster homes?
Children and adolescents of both sexes between the ages of 1 and 18 years can be admitted to the Therapeutic foster care program. These children may come into care for the following reasons: abuse abandonment or neglect. In some cases, a child may require out of home placement due to their own behavioral health issues. Through our screening and evaluation process, HSC makes a concerted effort to match the skills of our foster parents with the needs of the foster child.
Children and adolescents placed in our foster care programs have a variety of histories and backgrounds, as well as behavioral and emotional challenges, including severe difficulties with functioning in the family, school setting, and/or the community. Children with delays in development, inadequate interpersonal skills, and a possible history or community disruptions (i.e., contacts with police, courts, and mental health system), may also be accepted for foster placement. Children with severe cognitive disabilities, chronic aggressive or assaultive behaviors that constitute a danger to others, active suicidal gesturing, active and chronic involvement in drug or alcohol use, active disorientation or psychosis, and those children who cannot respond to the program’s verbal nature may be excluded.
What services are offered by HSC for foster parents and children?
- Foster parents are provided with initial and ongoing training provided by HSC staff.
- Ongoing Family support services,
- Counseling services are available through HSC and include home-based individual and family therapy
HSC families are part of the Child and Family Team or CFT. This team of people are important to the success of the child. Services provided through the CFT include:
- case management,
- psychiatric care when needed,
- referral to community resources,
- 24-hour crisis intervention services.
Becoming a Foster Parent
Human Services Consultants is seeking adults with a desire to make a difference in the life of a child in need, by becoming a professional foster parent.
Many people who are interested in becoming professional foster parents already have experience with children, either professionally or because they are a parent themselves. We put a strong emphasis on training and education in our program; we have found that the children referred to our program have exceptionally high needs that can be challenging to even the strongest parent.
If you are interested in having a career at home while providing a stable and caring family setting for a foster child, our professional foster care program may be just for you! The rewards can last a lifetime! To begin this process, we have answered a few common questions about what is involved with foster parenting and the steps needed to become a licensed foster home.
What are the qualifications to be a foster parent?
The Arizona Department of Child Safety (DCS) along with the Office of Licensing and Regulation (OLR) are responsible for setting the standards of foster homes, and issues a license for applicants who meet these standards. In addition, HSC requires foster parent applicants for our program to complete training and have experience beyond the state’s list of minimal requirements.
Some of the requirements you should expect to meet to apply to foster a child who needs an Out-of-Home Placement:
- Be at least 21 years of age and a legal resident of Arizona
- In possession or be able to obtain a Department of Public Safety (DPS) Level 1 Fingerprint Clearance Card
- Have a bedroom in your home for each foster child
- Pass a physical examination
- Possess a valid Arizona Driver’s License with an acceptable driving record
- Complete all pre-licensing training
- Have a minimum of one year verifiable employment, skills, and experience caring for children with behavioral health needs
- Access to a computer with internet and email.
- Have functional knowledge of basic computer skills
Beyond these requirements, we have found that successful foster parents exhibit the following characteristics:
- Sensitivity to difference
- Ability to delay gratification
- Strong support system
Above all else, we find that a sense of humor and the ability to see the good in all people is vital to success.
How are foster parents compensated?
Foster parents are reimbursed for the therapeutic services they provide in the home. This includes a daily therapeutic activity, transportation to appointments, daily progress note, and general care and wellbeing of the child. Reimbursements range between $900.00 per month and $3000.00 per month depending on the difficulty of care for the child. The reimbursement for fostering a child may be considered non-taxable, however, please consult with your financial advisor for specific details.
How do I get licensed?
Many people are surprised to find out that the licensing process can take quite a bit of time.
The steps to become licensed include the following:
- Initial interview
- Completion of application packet
- Fingerprint submission and clearance
- Background check
- Pre-service training
The entire process can take four to six months. While this may seem like a long time to you now, we have found that such a comprehensive licensing process is worthwhile. The children who need foster homes need us to be very careful about whom the State grants foster home licenses to, so they can experience life in a safe and caring family environment.
What is the Pre-Licensure Training?
The State of Arizona requires all foster parent to complete a blended on-line training course through Foster Parent College, meaning the course is taught on-line along with required hours with in-class participation.
Some of the topics’ included in pre-service include:
- The Child Welfare Team
- Child Development
- Child Abuse and Neglect
- Understanding Behavior in Foster Children
- Crisis intervention
- Working together with Primary Families
- Reducing stress
In addition, the State requires an additional 18 hours of Therapeutic Foster Care training, for those families wanting to obtain a Professional Foster Home license. HSC may also require families to participate in a clinical observation of another professional foster home.
Make a Difference!
We have found that all the challenges we face in this difficult work are worth it. To see a child grow and develop a sense of worth, to see them overcome their difficult life circumstances, to be a part of the solution addressing the problem: all of these are among the gifts that come with being a foster parent.
We look forward to continue working with you!
The Human Services Consultants Counseling Facility provides an array of outpatient counseling services to adults, adolescents, children and families residing in the counties of Maricopa, Pinal, and Gila Counties.
Program goals include:
- Marked improvement in level of functioning as evidenced by increased positive coping skills.
- Allow consumer to remain in the community in the least restrictive, most appropriate environment.
- Eliminate or markedly reduce behavioral health symptoms.
- Promote improvement in quality of life by supporting consumers’ acquisition and maintenance of satisfactory housing, work, school, daytime activities and social supports.
Additionally, Human Services Consultants Counseling services include the following goals:
- Decreasing aggressive and self defeating behavior
- Increasing pro-social coping skills
- Promoting positive growth for young men and women
- Provide community reintegration and service coordination for youth. Work with Child and Family Teams to facilitate the best Treatment “wraped” services for the youth and family
- Provide agency supports and on-going training
- Facilitate positive communication
The Human Services Consultants Counseling Facility offers general mental health, and other types of counseling services to support consumers and youth in almost any setting.
Detailed Description of Types of Services Offered
HSC provides services to youth and adults referred by the Arizona Department of Economic Security, the Arizona Department of Juvenile Corrections, the Salt River Pima Maricopa Indian Community, Mercy Maricopa Integrated Care, Health Choice Integrated Care, and from within our HSC program. Our services include the following:
Therapy/Counseling Services (25 hours per week):
Individual, family, and group counseling will be provided in accordance with the individual service plan (ISP) or existing Treatment Plan. If there is no Treatment Plan, one will be developed by the therapist and client. The ISP is developed by a treatment team including the consumer and people identified as supports by the consumer. At a minimum, HSC offers 25 hours each of Individual, Group and Family Counseling per week. Sessions will support the consumer gain a better understanding of presenting issues and previous difficulties while emphasizing present strengths and past successes. Special emphasis will be placed on markedly reducing present behaviors that could necessitate a higher level of care. Positive, pro-social coping skills will be introduced to decrease symptoms and behaviors. Individual counseling sessions will be conducted by appropriately trained clinicians.
Group counseling (25 hours per week):
Group counseling will be available, allowing clients to have the opportunity to share successes, difficulties, and solutions with the support of, the clinical staff. The sessions will focus on the presentation of materials as well as utilizing the consumer’s point-of-view, experience and history. The goal is to increase positive, pro-social coping skills, reduce self-defeating behaviors and maximize outcomes outlined in the individual service plan. Counselors will also run functional groups, based on the needs of the consumers, including community sessions, activities of daily living groups, independent living skills groups, process groups and other groups as indicated.
Family counseling (25 hours per week):
Family counseling facilitates significant changes and reinforces coping skills within the family system. The individual service plan serves as the template to frequency and modalities utilized in family counseling. Family counseling can enhance positive communications and strengthen family relationships. Our consumers often have unique family affiliations and our clinical staff will facilitate sessions with various family and supports identified by individual consumers.
Children from birth to 18 years of age who demonstrate a need for behavioral health services. Adults, 18 years or older, who demonstrate a need for behavioral health services under General Mental Health or Serious Mental Illness Programming.
Hours of Operation
The Human Services Consultants Counseling Facility administrative hours are from 9:00A.M to.5:00 P.M., Monday to Friday (excluding Federal and State holidays). The clinical hours are by appointment only. Therapists are available in the evening for scheduled appointments. All staff is available evenings and weekends. Counselors are on-call to provide twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week intervention and counseling.
Contact us for a Counseling intake appointment.