Credit hours:

Course Summary

Foster parents play a vital role in maintaining connections between children and their birth parents. These relationships can be confusing and chaotic for youth and require special care and handling. This isn't always easy; helping a young person maintain or strengthen connections to birth parents can be challenging. Learn how you as a foster parent can help support and guide a young person on their journey to creating or maintaining the extremely critical, healthy connection to their birth parents.

In this course, you can expect to learn:

  • Your role as a foster parent in helping a young person maintain connections to their birth parents
  • Positive ways to help a young person stay connected to birth parents
  • Strategies for building healthy and safe relationships with birth parents
  • Why relationships with birth parents are so important for youth in care, even if reunification is not the goal

Step 1

Read Kodi’s story about “Preparing for Reunification” with his birth mother and the importance and impact maintaining the connection to her made.

Step 2

Foster parents play a critical role when it comes to maintaining connections between youth and their family of origin. Review the following resource developed by the state of Wisconsin “Developing And Maintaining Family Connection”, to gain insight into how to promote and strengthen safe and healthy relationships.

Step 3

Learn about some of the struggles foster parents face when trying to help maintain family connections for youth who are in their care; as well as the potential benefits of creating supportive relationships with birth parents by reviewing  Fostering Perspectives article “Making a Difference by Maintaining Connections.”

Step 4

Foster parents can be one of the most important resources to help children and families reunify. Review “Resource Family Tip Sheet for Supporting Reunification” developed by the American Bar Association Center on Children and the Law for resources and tips on how to support a safe reunification.

Step 5

Learn why it is so important to help a young person remain connected to an incarcerated parent by reviewing Linda’s Story “Visiting Hours - Kids have a Right to see their Parents in Prison

Step 6

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

Why is it important to help a young person maintain connections to their family of origin even if reunification is not the permanency plan?

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

pacellan's picture

pacellan said:

Because although the biological parents may mess up, in that childs eyes that is all they know and they love their mom and dad.
Lisakyle17's picture

Lisakyle17 said:

no matter the outcome every child/children has the right to know there birth parents. one day they may hold that against you and could end up hurting you in the end
AshleyCaraluzzi's picture

AshleyCaraluzzi said:

Every child deserves to know where they came from and who their parents are; it's a part of who they are. I grew up not knowing my mother and still to this day at the age of 32 I wonder who she is and what she is like and if I do have other family out there somewhere. I know what it feels like feeling "incomplete." No child should ever have to wonder what their parents are like, they should know.
askeens0809's picture

askeens0809 said:

Its is extremely important for a child/children to understand who they are by where they come from. It is important to know all family dynamics. They not only deserve to know the truth, they deserve to know the reasoning behind certain issues so in the future the can be as emotionally, mentally and physically happy and healthy as possible.
bwfree3's picture

bwfree3 said:

help the child to stay the course of being a good citizen teach about jobs schooling and to cope with problems as they come to be a back bone for them when they need it
Nieshab's picture

Nieshab said:

There are multiple benefits for children to stay in touch with their birth family. The number one reason is so that the child knows that they have a support team for them. Every child deserves to feel and be loved!
emzimmerebner's picture

emzimmerebner said:

Foster children have the right to visit there families. It is also important for children to get answers from there families or parents if they are incarcerated. We must assist in keeping the families comnected.
Cassie Sartor's picture

Cassie Sartor said:

Because they love there birth parent and sometimes its better for them to keep that connection with them so if they are reunited.
Bobby47's picture

Bobby47 said:

I think if there is no safety concerns its very important to keep that connection. Children should be able to visit and know their biological family, they should know where they came from and who shares their genes. They should never be left to wonder and create fantasy about their biological families. Family is important.
kkeller's picture

kkeller said:

We have had positive relationships with our kids bio parents and it has been great! We still get to be apart of their lives and we love it!!!