Credit hours:
3.00

Course Summary

Especially while in foster care, a young person's care and development, should be the top concern of all supportive adults involved. Foster parents may need to take unique steps to ensure the young person's well-being if the child's cultural background is different from than their own. This means creating an intentional plan to develop a thorough respect and understanding of the young person's religion, cultural values, customs, and beliefs. As outlined in the following course, honoring a child or young person’s cultural connections, practices, and specific needs can give a young person a sense of permanency and belonging that will benefit them in emotional, mental and spiritual ways.

In this course, you can expect to learn:

  • Considerations to weigh before committing to becoming a parent to a young person of a different race

  • Actions to take to ensure children and youth in care maintain a strong sense of racial identity and connection to culture

  • the importance of cultural connections for children and youth in care

  • Strategies to minimize the impact of being placed in a home that is culturally different to a child or youth’s own identity and culture

  • Steps to take to make your home a bicultural home that celebrates a bicultural family

Transracial Parenting in Foster Care and Adoption

Step 1

Review the  "Transracial Parenting in Foster Care and Adoption" guidebook created to help parents and children in transracial homes learn how to thrive in and celebrate their bicultural family; and for children to gain a strong sense of racial identity and cultural connections.

Step 2

Watch the following video to gain perspective of the impact living in a home outside of their own culture or ethnic background can have on a young person in foster care 

Step 3

Review this booklet "In the Rainbow: Cultural Best Practices in Foster Care" created by C. Kimo Alameda, Ph. D, to learn how Hawai'i, the country's most diverse state, is mindful of the trauma youth have experienced coming into the foster care system and how to minimize the impact of being placed in a home that is culturally different to a child or youth’s own identity and culture.

Step 4

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

What challenges have you faced, or what challenges might you anticipate facing, as a bicultural foster parent?

Step 5

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

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Course Discussion

chris.simpson08's picture

chris.simpson08 said:

I have faced many challenges as a foster parent that has children of a different race, as I'm a black male foster parent and the three foster kids that I have are white. I've gotten stares anywhere we go and it makes me more vigilant than ever to make sure that I'm paying attention to how I speak to them and how I interact with them as people are always watching us closely.
ktrickel's picture

ktrickel said:

The comments others make and the discrimination they will face both with me and on their own. My husband and I do respite care for foster youth of other races, and the things people say/how they react/the looks they give can be a lot to handle.
shulsey88's picture

shulsey88 said:

AA haircare has been my biggest challenge! So hard, so time consuming and so expensive. And skin care a little at first but that was easy, I just wasn't used to a child having dry skin. AA culture wasn't too hard because my aunt and my best friend are AA. The Hispanic kids I have had came with a language barrier with the bio parents. The kids had to translate and I wasn't always sure how honest or accurate they were.
ssrieske's picture

ssrieske said:

it made me much more aware of inequalities and lack of representation
swashington12's picture

swashington12 said:

working with children for most of my life as a nanny for 17 years of many diverse cultures, as you work with them and learn more about them it becomes easier, now days you can learn a lot on you tube called mixed children foster care, all kinds of videos on this information, but i never had any problems.
lkeolamphu's picture

lkeolamphu said:

having been born multi-racial I understand how important is for people outside and inside the family to be open to different cultures. We are all different but it doesn't make us unrelatable
merollba's picture

merollba said:

It would benefit our kids to have more people of color in our lives, in their schools and in their community. I can't control all of that however, so I need to make more of an effort to seek out opportunities to surround them with people who look like them.
mcmerolla's picture

mcmerolla said:

We have had two children placed with us for three plus years that are a different ethnicity than us. Since they are young, we have not run into any obvious racial discrimination but I am anticipating as they grow up there will be situations that arise. I am nervous that I am too naive and won't know how to best prepare and equip them for those moments.
hensonsc's picture

hensonsc said:

We have had different Races in our 9 years, the biggest challenge is to know what and how to ask so child does not feel offended. From hair care to what is eaten in the home we have found several differences in how children of different cultures are raised and what life experiences they have had already. But luckily we have had some great resources in our case workers to help with our questions and helping us to learn.
DeeGee's picture

DeeGee said:

My husband and I are new foster parents. I am most worried that my older relatives will not be as open to accepting a child of a different race as the younger generation. I want any child that is placed in our home to feel part of our family and I am trying to educate my older generation relatives.