Taking in a new foster care child can be expensive. I believe that some Foster Parents would be more likely to take on more kids if we didn’t have to eat the expense up front.
We recently took in a teenager out of Kids First and he basically came to us with the clothes on his back. Aside from that initial expense of getting him all the clothes and supplies he needed, our household expenses went up immediately. Because he goes to school 30 miles round trip from our house with many “visits” and appointments on top of that, our biggest expense has been in gas. Who would have thought that a gas expense should have been in our budget when planning to take in a new child?
Because we are discovering some of the “bumps” in the new placement journey currently, I couldn’t help but think how useful a “packing list” for surviving a new placement would be for foster dads. What are some of the necessities when preparing for a child to come into your home?
So, here is my version of a “new placement packing list”
1. Clothing voucher
2. Food voucher
3. GAS CARDS GAS CARDS GAS CARDS. (Oh did I say gas cards?)
Perks Essential to the “Process”:
1. Movie passes
2. Restaurant gift cards
3. YMCA/Gym passes
4. Baseball Tickets (for us it’s the Whitecaps!)
Something important to add to your list (or budget) for the beginning of a new placement is time spent together becoming a family. These experiences are essential to making the new child in your home feel safe and part of a community.