BATAVIA, OH (Dec. 9, 2019) — Trina Farrell has been recruiting foster parents for Clermont County Children’s Protective Services for eight years. The Board of County Commissioners recently contracted with her for continued service. Learn more about Farrell and her important work in this interview.
What are the requirements to become a foster parent?
The basic requirement to become a foster parent is that you should be at least 21 years old; however, this age requirement will change next year to 18. You may own or rent your house or apartment but you must have adequate space available. Aside from that, you may be married, single or divorced and may have other children. And, don’t think you’re too old – we get a lot of interest from senior citizens wanting to be a foster care provider.
What is involved in becoming certified as a foster parent? Training requirements?
Foster parents must be certified. This requires 36 hours of pre-service training. Classes are offered through Clermont County at no cost. You must also have CPR First Aid training, and a homestudy completed. You can find all of the pre-service training dates online at clermontforkids.org.
Why do people become foster parents? What are the benefits?
People generally become foster parents to provide a safe, stable, and loving home for children who have been removed from their homes due to neglect or abuse. While we do offer benefits that will help foster care parents take care of the children in their care, like a daily per diem, and daycare stipends, the true benefits of being a foster parent are more intrinsic, knowing you are providing a safe, nurturing environment for the children of our community.
What’s your background?
I am actually an educator and have been teaching elementary school students in Clermont County for 22 years. As a teacher, I have worked with a number of foster children placed in our schools. I appreciate nothing more than loving foster care parents who not only work hard to provide a loving environment, but also instill the importance of education. I have met so many wonderful foster parents over the years.
What’s your approach toward recruitment? How do you find good foster parents?
Fostering is extremely rewarding but can also be challenging and certainly isn’t for everyone. I think people genuinely want to help but many just don’t quite know where or how to begin. My job is to educate, answer questions, and help people to decide if the choice is right for them. We offer open house events throughout the year, and attend community events to deliver information to families. Our current foster parents are also a big part of our recruitment approach. They attend open house events to share their experiences with others. This is very important as future foster parents want to know the ups and downs and ins and outs of being a foster parent.
Our trainers and case workers do a fantastic job of preparing people for their role as foster parents and providing guidance and assistance along the way. We are fortunate to have so many wonderful foster care providers in our area.
Anything else you would like to add?
I’ve heard from so many people that they have considered becoming a foster parent but, for whatever reason, they never took that next step to learn more. I encourage anyone who might be interested in becoming a foster parent to give me a call or attend an open house. You can call me directly at 513-732-7765 or visit Clermontforkids.org to get more information. Our latest open house dates are posted on our website. I look forward to your call!