Being a foster parent is an extremely rewarding role, but it comes with its fair share of difficulties. Because of this, the interview process for aspiring foster parents is designed to assess parent readiness and capability in a variety of contexts. The interview process is one way in which this design is reflected, and it can be understandably nerve-racking for many interviewees. If you are a prospective foster parent who is preparing for an upcoming interview, take a look below at three helpful tips to keep in mind. 

Don't Be Afraid to Give Lots of Details

Interviewees should expect foster agency representatives or case workers to ask general questions at the beginning of the interview. These might be about the reasons behind your desire to foster, or your expectations of it going forward. Answers to these types of questions are best if they include specific details and examples of prior experiences. This not only helps the interviewer to get to know you better but also reassures them that your intentions are thought out and your goals are pragmatic.

Be Yourself

While it may sound trite, it is crucial that you (and anyone else participating in the family interview) be as authentic as possible. One of the main goals of an interviewer is to get a better sense of who you are, what your home is like, and which children currently in the foster care system might be the best match. For example, a foster child who is reserved or socially anxious may not be comfortable living in a big house with a large family full of extroverts.

Plan for Challenges

All foster parents will encounter challenges, and many of these may be sudden or unexpected. A foster agency representative will want to see in an interview that you have planned to meet these challenges head-on, and with specific solutions in mind. For example, they will want to see what steps you have taken (or will take) to make your home as safe a space as possible, both physically and emotionally. They will also want to hear more about your approach to discipline, communication, and medical needs. If you have not yet taken serious time to consider these aspects of foster parenting, be sure to do so as soon as possible.

With detailed answers, authenticity, and specific plans on your side, you will be able to pass a foster parent interview and open your home to a child in need.