Thank you for your interest in helping children! Here is some information about the licensing process which we hope is helpful.
Orientation: You (both spouses if a two-parent home) will need to attend an informational meeting (Orientation) where you can discuss the requirements of becoming a foster parent. You will get basic information, and questions are welcome. You will learn about the types of foster care and general licensing and foster care policies. A video/DVD explaining foster care in Michigan is available to view in your home or during orientation. Orientations are offered individually or in a group.
Criminal and Abuse and Neglect Clearances: You will need to obtain criminal record and Protective Services clearances at the local and Federal level. This is paid for by the State.
Medical Clearances: You will need to obtain a medical clearance from your family physician stating that there are no physical or mental health conditions that would prohibit you from caring for a child.
Home Inspection: Your home will be inspected for any potential hazards. If you have a private well and septic system, this requires an inspection also. This inspection is paid for by the State.
Vehicle Inspection: You will need to have a safety inspection completed on any vehicle that you will be using to transport children. The inspection can be completed by any certified mechanic. Generally there is no charge. Sometimes there is a fee assessed when any problems are found which is then deducted from the repair work.
Training: You will be provided training to learn more about the children needing care and to assess your strengths in parenting children. P.R.I.D.E. (Parent Resources for Information, Development and Education) classes are required for all foster parents. These classes boost your knowledge and confidence in meeting the challenge of taking children into your home. These interactive trainings also offer an opportunity to help you assess whether you are ready to follow through on the commitment to foster.
Home Study: A licensing worker will visit you in your home. The purpose is to discuss your personal history, family interests and lifestyle, child-care experiences, the types of children you feel would best fit in your home, and your strengths and skills in meeting the needs of foster children. All members of the household are interviewed.