top of page

Foster Care Services 

Foster Parents

Foster parents provide alternative living arrangements when it has been determined that a child cannot remain in the home of his/her biological parents. 

CONCERN provides a variety of supportive services to families such as compensation, training, and respite. CONCERN matches children with families who are able to best meet their needs.

It takes a special person to become a foster/adoptive parent. Opening your home to children who need your love and care is a significant contribution to making a difference in the lives of these children. Through your support and commitment, you open many doors for children allowing them to look forward to brighter futures and productive adulthood.

The first steps to becoming a foster/adoptive family include attending an informational meeting, completing a formal application, and participating in several interviews with a recruiter. The recruiter assists families in completing all of the necessary paperwork and answering a family’s questions about foster care.

Intensive Foster Care

Intensive Foster Care (Treatment Foster Care in Maryland) is a community-based program for children and youth whose needs cannot be met in their own families and therefore requires out-of-home placements. Children in this program may exhibit significant behavioral problems, and/or varying degrees of social or emotional dysfunctions.

CONCERN’s specially trained foster parents create a family-like environment, which improves the child’s opportunities for more normalized daily living experiences.

Community Residential Rehabilitation (CRR) 

Community Residential Rehabilitation (CRR) Foster Care provides youth ages 5-21 with individualized community-based services, in a structured foster home 
environment. The program offers youth the ability to address behavioral and mental health needs in a supportive and safe setting. The length of time in the program is between 6-12 months depending upon 
several factors, including the needs of the youth, progress made, and discharge 
planning.This strength-based model uses the youth’s current strengths to identify strategies that will lead to success. Children and adolescents build resiliency when factors such as a support system, positive school experiences, and strong problem-solving skills are present.

Medical Foster Care

Medical Foster Care is a specialized foster care designed to meet the medical needs of children birth to 21 years of age who have a range of complex medical conditions. The children reside in homes, with support, instead of a more restrictive setting, such as a prolonged hospital stay or a long-term care facility. Foster Parents receive training for the child's specific need and medical condition(s).

In the state of Maryland this program is referred to as Medically Fragile Foster Care.

Mother/Baby Foster Care

Mother/Baby Foster Care is designed to provide support to an adolescent or expectant mother in her efforts to develop a good parent/child relationship, while focusing on the competencies of parenting skills, child development, sexual safety, and independent living.

Mothers enrolled in this program must establish a routine to address her infant’s needs, provide stimulating development, and educational activities for her infant, coordinate and arrange medical care for the infant, establish a budget to practice household management and enroll in an educational program or be gainfully employed.

Foster/Adopt
and Adoption

Foster/Adopt and Adoption programs are designed to improve permanency outcomes for children in foster care. CONCERN is committed to helping children find a permanent family they can call their own.

 

Services the department provides include Child Profiles, Child Preparation Services, Child Specific Recruitment Services, Placement Services, Family Preparation and Profiles, and Finalization Services.

Community
Service Program 

Trauma Focus
Foster Care

Trauma-Focused Foster Care is designed to provide a less restrictive placement setting for youth who are stepping down from a more restrictive congregate care setting such as a group home or residential facility. These youth are unable to live with their families due to behavioral issues as a result of complex trauma associated with a myriad of experiences such as physical abuse, sexual abuse, emotional abuse, severe neglect, abandonment or another traumatic loss, witness to domestic violence or violent crime, parental substance abuse, and homelessness. Foster parents are specially trained in trauma-informed care and work closely with behavioral health staff who are certified in trauma focused cognitive behavioral therapy.

Kinship Foster Care -
Coming Soon

Kinship foster care allows children who are being removed from their parents’ custody to be placed with someone who they have already established a significant relationship with. This could be a family member, family friend, or other close community relationship. Kinship care helps to maintain the child’s connection with their family, increases stability, and minimizes the trauma of family separation. 
Some kinship families may be able to 
provide support to children by going 
through the court system to become their legal guardian, however other kinship resources choose to become approved through CONCERN. 

Traditional Foster Care 

Traditional Foster Care provides out-of-home 
placement services for children and youth who 
do not require behavioral health services or 
have educational needs.

Intermediate Foster Care

Intermediate Foster Care provides out-ofhome placement services for children and youth who generally do not require more intensive interventions such as behavioral health services, and children may have more educational needs than children in the 
traditional level.

Frequently Asked Questions

Who are the foster children? 
Children in foster care may have histories of abuse, neglect, severe medical problems, delinquency and are currently unable to live at home. The children in foster care range from birth to age 21 and have a variety of ethnic, racial,LGBTIQA+, and religious backgrounds.

Where do the foster children come from who are placed with CONCERN? 
More than half of Pennsylvania’s 67 counties, and on occasion agencies in other states, utilize CONCERN as a placement option for children. CONCERN regional offices take home location into consideration, and attempt, if possible, to find homes within close proximity to the biological family home and school district. These considerations can assure consistency of care and limit the amount of traveling.

How many children are placed with foster parents? 

Foster parents indicate how many children they will accept into their care. In accordance with Pennsylvania Department of Public Welfare regulations, there are to be no more than six children in the home, this includes biological children under the age of eighteen and foster children under the age of twenty-one. In consideration of Council on Accreditation (COA) 
Standards, additional supports are provided when more than four children are placed into a foster home. 

How long do the children stay? 

The goal for each child is to achieve permanency either through reunification, adoption, or another planned permanent living arrangement. The length of time to achieve permanency can widely vary.

Who decides when the children may return home? 
Children are court-ordered into the care of their counties, which then place the children with CONCERN. After carefully reviewing the child’s progress and the family’s progress, as well as recommendations of the county placing agency 
and CONCERN, a judge makes the decision to return the child to his or her birth family. Reunification is court ordered when the child’s and family’s progress toward achievement of the goals outlined in the Family Service Plan are supported.

What is expected of a foster parent? 
As members of the child’s treatment team, foster parents provide a stable, caring home environment while working closely with CONCERN staff members in following agency policies and assisting children in meeting their Individualized Service Plan (ISP) goals. It is important for foster families to be accepting and understanding of the child’s birth family to foster a positive relationship.

Do foster parents receive financial support? 
Yes, foster parents receive a daily per diem rate which will be paid monthly and is determined by the child’s program. The per diem paid by CONCERN will assist with costs affiliated with room and board, mileage, clothing, allowances, activities, and direct care. Medical expenses are paid for through either the Medical Assistance program or the birth parent’s health insurance. Foster parents are required to use providers who accept Medical Assistance payments. CONCERN can assist 
foster parents in locating these providers in the community. Foster families can also apply for Title XX funding for childcare, and Women Infants and Children (WIC) for nutrition assistance if their foster child is under the age of 5.

What is the background of foster families? 
Foster families represent diverse racial, ethnic, economic, religious, LGBTIQA+, and cultural backgrounds. Foster parents can 
successfully foster regardless of marital status. CONCERN encourages families to examine their own cultural background and explore their knowledge of other backgrounds to meet the needs of a diverse population of children.

Must foster parents own their home? 
CONCERN has no restrictions regarding whether a foster home is owned or rented. However, the agency does recommend that foster parents who rent, check with their landlord regarding restrictions in their lease and local 
occupancy ordinances.

bottom of page