How Does the Foster Care System Work Exactly?

In 2018, there were over 430,000 children in foster care. Lots of these children are in the system because, for one reason or another, their parent is unable to take care of them. Being a foster parent is a lot of work but a huge opportunity to provide a child with a safe and loving home. So if you’re interested in fostering but wondering, “How does the foster care system work?” you’ve come to the right place.

Foster care seems complicated, but all it takes is a little explanation. So here’s a simple guide to how foster care works.


First, you need to apply to become a foster parent. This, of course, means going through a lot of paperwork.

Fun fact: You don’t have to be married to be a foster parent. If you’re single and want to foster, you can still apply.

On top of the paperwork, it would not be uncommon for you (and your spouse if you have one) to also have an in-person interview. These are important because program leaders need to know who they’re letting take care of children.

It’s a big responsibility!


Next, you can expect to go through training if you’re approved to become foster parents. But, again, training will vary based on which kind of foster program you are working with.

Some programs may offer immersion training, reading, and instructional videos for different situations. They also may work on building up your emotional abilities because foster care is complex and challenging.

After training, there is often a certification awarded, and it never truly ends. As a result, you may be asked to brush up on training every few years.

You might even help train other foster parents when the time comes. And when you actually get a foster child, you’ll learn new things every day.


Fostering a child is where everything gets put together. First, you’re reminded of the reason you worked so hard to become a foster parent.

You’re providing a child with a great and loving environment through networks that care about children’s wellbeing, like this foster program. And, of course, the goal is that in the end, the child is reunited with their parent and lives a better life than before.

This part of foster care can sometimes be the most difficult. But it truly is one of the most important parts of the system.

Question Answered: How Does the Foster Care System Work?

Now you can check “How does the foster care system work?” off your list of questions to answer! There are tons more to learn about it now if you want to dive deeper into the details.

Foster families undergo lots of interesting circumstances and are often supported in many ways through foster programs. However, there is always more to discover and educate yourself about when it comes to foster care.

If you’re interested now, start looking up foster care systems in your area today!

If you liked this post, then be sure to check out some of our others and to check back with us soon for more content.

Diana Muniz
Diana Muniz

With over 20+ years of experience in a variety of corporate and entrepreneurial environments, Diana has developed a great understanding of Marketing Strategy, Brand Development, Customer Success, Public Relations and Management. Her internal drive for developing others and external brands, has allowed her to work in some of the largest cities in the world including Milan, Paris, NY, Mexico, and the Middle East. This experience has been fundamental to Diana’s success and ability to communicate cross-culturally.