Foster Parent Mentoring Program
The MDCPS Foster Parent Mentoring Program is designed to provide foster parents with a mentor who will have a consistent presence in the foster parent's life. The overall goal of the mentoring program is to provide healthy relationships for foster parents.
What is a foster parent mentor?
A foster parent mentor is a current or former foster parent who has served as a foster parent for at least 18 months or longer. The mentor is a volunteer position that requires a minimum commitment of two meaningful contacts per month. The mentor should build a relationship with their mentee, helping them to develop essential foster parent skills, engage with them in social activities, maintain regular contact, and more.
A mentor is someone who will:
- Encourage and support current foster parents in their foster care journey.
- Be a consistent figure in the mentee’s life.
- Offer guidance, friendship, and reinforcement and be a positive example for the mentee.
- Have a love for children and a solid adherence to MDCPS Foster Parent Policy.
- Show willingness to work with biological families and the ability to implement shared parenting when appropriate.
What are the mentor’s responsibilities?
- Develop a strong supportive relationship with the foster parent.
- Provide a summary of the contact, issues, questions, topics, or resolutions discussed between the mentor and the mentee to be submitted to the Foster Parent Liaison.
- Attend a quarterly debrief meeting with the Foster Parent Liaison to review the mentoring program from the mentor’s perspective.
How to become a mentor?
- The process starts by contacting the Foster Parent Liaison through the following avenues:1-800-821-9157 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
- A mentor candidate will need a recommendation from the Foster Parent Liaison, MDCPS licensure, adoption, or frontline staff member and must include a reference independent of the agency.
- Submit all the minimum qualifications and complete an interview process.
- Commit to at least two meaningful contacts per month for the length of at least one year. However, four meaningful contacts per month would be preferred.
- Committed: Shares MDCPS’ passion for service through honor, integrity, accountability, and stewardship to our children.
- Attentive: Looks out for the needs of others by being thoughtful, genuine, caring, courteous, and honest.
- Responsive: Provides effective results by owning each interaction, following through, making, and keeping promises.
- Excellence: Continuously strives to exceed expectations by seeking, acquiring, and sharing knowledge.
What support does MDCPS offer throughout the mentor program?
MDCPS Foster Parent Liaison guides the mentorship throughout the entire process to ensure a successful foster parent mentor/mentee match is made. MDCPS will provide ongoing training and support.
The value of being a Foster Parent Mentor?
Foster Parent Mentors may inspire other foster parents to make good decisions and set out on a path forward to provide a better outcomes for children and families.
We want all foster parents to grow, learn and succeed in this area. With the help of a mentor coming alongside them, these foster parents can take the next steps toward leading children to adulthood while creating positive memories through fun and meaningful activities and relationships.