Foster Parenting FAQ

iStock_000010308686MediumFoster Care Frequently Asked Questions

For your convenience, The Marsh Foundation has listed the most frequently asked questions and answers regarding foster care. If you still have more questions, please feel free to call us at 419.238.1695 ext. 360 or visit our Help Kids page.

How old do you need to be?

You must be at least 21 years old to become a foster parent.

Do you have to earn a certain income?

You must be able to meet your household needs.

Do you have to be married?

No, you can be married, single, divorced, widowed or be a co-parent.

Do you have to own your own home?

No, you can rent. But you must have adequate space available and your landlord’s approval to care for foster children.

Can you be a foster parent if you work?

Yes. Extra help for the cost of day care may be available.

Do foster children have to have separate bedrooms?

No, but each child must have a separate bed. Foster children cannot have a bedroom in the attic or basement. After age five, boys and girls have to sleep in separate rooms.

How many foster children can I take?

For the first two years, licensed foster parents may take up to three foster children. After two years of service, up to five children with a total of ten children maximum including your own children, foster children and any children for whom you provide day care.

Can a foster parent request specific ages or sex of foster children?

You may ask for the age and gender of children you think would fit in best with your family situation and needs.

Can I be a foster parent if I have a criminal record?

Possibly. Each situation would be reviewed under the Ohio Department of Jobs and Family Services rules for family foster care. If it is found that the person’s criminal record meets the rehabilitation requirements of the State of Ohio rules, then the person could be considered as a potential foster parent. All adult household members must have a criminal background check.

What is the home study?

The home study is a process which involves information sharing and gathering for the purpose of determining an applicant’s suitability in meeting the general criteria to be licensed and/or approved as a foster or foster-to-adopt parent based upon state and agency eligibility requirements.

The home study is a detailed process which involves all household members. During the home study, all family members will be interviewed by the Licensing Specialist. The process affords an applicant(s) the opportunity to assess whether or not foster care is the appropriate option for one’s family. The home study process also provides the applicant(s) and The Marsh Foundation the opportunity to mutually assess which child(ren) in the agency’s care the applicant(s) is best suited to parent.

How long does all this take?

The home study process usually takes three to six months.

When can I have foster children come to my home?

After your home study has been completed and approved, The Marsh recommends the family for licensing to the Ohio Department of Jobs and Family Services. When you receive your license, we can begin placing foster children with your family.

What kind of assistance does the agency provide to foster parents in caring for children?

Foster parents receive a reimbursement check twice each month for the care of each child. This reimbursement check may include child care assistance if a foster parent is employed. Foster parents are provided with ongoing training opportunities. Additionally, all medical and dental care is provided for foster children. A foster care consultant is also assigned to each foster home to provide personal support. 24-7 on call consultation is available.

Are there babies or young children that need foster parents?

The Marsh Foundation receives referrals for children of all ages, 0-17 and sibling groups.


Marsh Foundation Hires Foster Care Licensing Specialist and Consultant

VAN WERT, Ohio – The Marsh Foundation has hired Brenna Hayes, LSW, to join the Foster Care and Adoption Division as a licensing specialist and consultant. Hayes is a recent graduate of Bowling Green State University with a bachelor’s degree in social work and a minor in psychology. Hayes brings with her a variety of […]