More than 20,000 children in Pennsylvania's child welfare system are unable to live with their biological families due to abuse, neglect, or behavioral problems. COBYS Family Services places children referred by county agencies in foster homes, where they can receive the love, guidance, and nurture they need to grow toward wholeness. While foster care by nature is temporary, resource families can make lasting impressions upon children with special needs.
The COBYS Foster Care program provides care for children up to age 21. The goal of foster care is to assist biological families in resolving the issues that led to placement so that families can be reunited as quickly and safely as possible. (In cases where reuniting families isn't possible, COBYS also provides adoption services.) Especially needed are racial and ethnic minority families and families who are willing to care for teens, sibling groups, minority children, and medically fragile children. Families are needed to provide both full-time foster care and part-time respite care for a few days at a time.
Caring for foster children presents many challenges to families. COBYS' Christian focus and manageable case loads enable us to provide resource families with the help they need to be successful in their ministry. COBYS resource families receive:
- Support from caring professionals, including regular visits, advice, encouragement, and 24-hour emergency access to a caseworker.
- Financial assistance for each child, including a per diem rate; clothing allowance; and medical, dental, and prescription coverage.
- Therapeutic services (on a case-by-case basis) tailored to the needs of individual children.
- Occasional respite from caring for children to provide time to nurture marriages and family relationships.
Before serving as foster parents, adoptive parents, or respite parents, families are required to attend an orientation session and complete a 27-hour pre-service training. Orientations are offered monthly in both Lancaster and Berks Counties. Trainings begin the first week of January, April, and September, and the last week of May.
Click to learn about Becoming a Resource Parent
Questions? Go to Frequently Asked Questions or contact a COBYS Resource Home Coordinator at email@example.com.
Learn more about COBYS foster care in this WJTL video interview of COBYS Resource Home Coordinator Sara Riddle and Director of Placement Services Mary Sourber.
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