Credit hours:

Course Summary

For a young person in foster care, having permanence means stability and reliable, supportive lifelong connections. All youth in foster care need it. Understanding permanency and the Permanency Pact described in this course can give you confidence as you guide youth in your care towards building and strengthening relationships with supportive people in their life.

In this course, you can expect to learn:

  • The importance of permanency for youth in care

  • How young people in foster care think about permanency

  • The different types of permanent relationships and their roles in the lives of youth in care

  • The difference between positive and negative supports

  • Several ways a transitioning youth could benefit from the support of an adult

  • How to brainstorm a list of prospective Permanency Pact adults

  • How to access and create a Permanency Pact

  • The importance of understanding that permanency comes with responsibility from all people involved – including youth

Step 1

Watch the video "What Does Permanency Mean?" developed by Nebraska Children and Families Foundation to better understand what permanency means to foster youth.

Step 2

Meet the Lived Experience Leaders involved in the ACF’s All-In Youth Engagement Team, and learn from their expertise about what they would like to see for permanency in the foster care system.  Then review the All-In Youth Engagement Team’s  Recommendations for Improving Permanency and Well-Being.

Step 3

Review the FosterClub Permanency Pact. The Pact is designed to help foster youth identify supportive adult connections which will continue to provide positive supports through and beyond the transition from care. As a foster parent, you can introduce a young person to this tool and help them identify those continuing supports in an effort to build a strong support network.

Step 4

Watch and read how the Juvenile Law Center in Pennsylvania and its "Youth Fostering Change" program developed a "youth-perspective" toolkit for child welfare professionals that helps youth in care achieve permanency. 

Step 5

Review the following post written about the Permanency Pact by Independent Living Outreach Specialist at Children’s Aid Society Ebone Watkins.

Step 6

Review the article "Legal and Relational Permanence in Older Foster Care Youths" from Social Work Today.

Step 7

Join the discussion in the comments below to answer the following question:

How would you explain permanence to your foster youth?

Step 8

Finished the module? If you are logged in as a subscribed user, take the quiz to earn your Continuing Education Credit hours and certificate!

Subscribe now!

Just $24.95 for 1 year subscription per parent (unlimited access to courses for one year).

Subscribe Now

Log in to your account

Already subscribed? Log in to your FosterClub account now to take a course!

Log in

Course Discussion

dreeves's picture

dreeves said:

a forever family with unconditional love support and patience a warm home with lots fun times making memories
Dhinton's picture

Dhinton said:

Unconditional love from all parties in the relationship!
Kevin Welch's picture

Kevin Welch said:

I thought it was very interesting when the young lady said they loved me even when I wouldn't let them. Since we have been fostering primarily troubled teens that rings o so true.
Blair's picture

Blair said:

I would describe permanence as a family who is there for you your whole life. A place to spend Christmas and Thanksgiving. A place to bring kids of your own when you have them.
Blair's picture

Blair said:

I would describe permanence as a family who is there for you your whole life. A place to spend Christmas and Thanksgiving. A place to bring kids of your own when you have them.
Calesfamily511's picture

Calesfamily511 said:

Permanency means you will always have a place to call home, a base of support for any questions, and for unconditional love.
ajoanne's picture

ajoanne said:

permanency is life long...a family that will always be there through the good and bad times.
nryan206's picture

nryan206 said:

Having a family that will be there for you forever. A stable mom and dad that will support you for the rest of your life, no matter what. A place you can always 'come home to'.
lmcurry's picture

lmcurry said:

I would describe permanency to youth as 1) Having a long lasting relationship where multiple supports are provided and can be counted on 2) If desired, there can be a legal or written commitment to permanency.
CarolineShafer's picture

CarolineShafer said:

I would describe permanency as having a supportive adult who loves and cares for you. An adult/family that is there for you and treats you as if you are blood.