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Foster Care child on bus in yakima
Icon-About Foster Care
About Foster Care

Become a foster parent.

Children need a stable home. When you foster a child, you give them shelter from disruptive issues that have made their living situation untenable. Often children are removed from their homes due to abuse, neglect, abandonment, or the death of their caregivers. You can help them find their way to a stable, safe, comfortable future by opening your home and heart to these kids in need.

The Yakima Valley Farm Workers Clinic’s Behavioral Health Services (BHS) is a state-licensed mental health agency overseeing the foster care of children, adolescents, and adults living throughout Yakima County. BHS also supports the rehabilitation of foster children with individual, group, and family therapy, independent living skills, crisis assessments and interventions, intensive outreach-based case management, behavioral assessments for children, psychological testing, and psychiatric services.

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Foster child playing in park

What types of children does BHS serve?

  • Most children range in age from 6-18
  • Children may be part of a sibling group
  • Come from diverse ethnic and cultural populations
  • May have medical, mental, and/or physical health issues
  • May have been exposed to drug and alcohol use/abuse

All foster children are affected by the separation from their family. Sometimes this stress and worry show up in their behavior. Some children have not experienced the usual routines of family life and need extra understanding and patience.

Support services

 What training is required?

  • Orientation – In-person and Online
  • Pre-service Training
  • BHS Orientation
  • First Aid/CPR and Blood
  • Borne Pathogens

Foster parents must maintain 30 hours of training per year. All parents are required to take an additional 36-hour Parenting Plus Class within their first two years of licensing. There is no cost for training.

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Requirements for becoming a foster parent.

  • You must be at least 21
  • Have sufficient income to support your household without relying on foster care support payments
  • Discipline children in a positive manner without the use of physical punishment
  • Provide supervision appropriate to the age or specific behavior of the child
  • Complete select training and certifications

All applicants must complete and pass a background check with the FBI and Washington State Patrol.

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