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

StacyHagans's picture

StacyHagans said:

Have an adult you can always go to no matter what as you age in the system and age out of the system whether you remain foster, are adopted, are placed with kin or with fictive kin.
mattbaxter's picture

mattbaxter said:

Help each child to know they are important and show them that they have rights and that we will always be there for them
gdmj0311's picture

gdmj0311 said:

this is actually something we have been talking about more often lately. our child just turned 16 so we are trying to prepare her for when the time comes. we have let her know we will always be here to help in whatever capacity we can but reading the importance of the permanency pact and some of the issues that aged out kids face has opened our eyes to topics we need to address.
Sammiek's picture

Sammiek said:

explaining permancy to my foster youth, i would tell them that we will aways be there for them no matter what. welcome their questions they may have. after every argument remind them that we love them!
ladynick77's picture

ladynick77 said:

I think this Permanancy pact is s amazing and beneficial..Allows for security and support which is much needed for the youth aging out of the system.
markmcnair's picture

markmcnair said:

Each child that comes into our home is a part of our family and we coach our kiddos on making sure that even foster brothers and sisters are still brothers and sisters.
Katchick's picture

Katchick said:

Help each child to know they are important and show them that they have rights and that i will always be there for them's picture

[email protected] said:

A family that gives the foster child stability.'s picture

renitamallory@g... said:

I would explain permanency as a family you can depend on regardless of age or circumstances.
Kphillips's picture

Kphillips said:

I would explain permanence as a feeling of belonging. It is when you know you have someone to depend on and except you no matter what.