Approximately 17,000 children in New York City are in foster care. Some of these children have suffered physical and emotional abuse. Others have suffered neglect due to parental substance abuse or lack of adequate housing, nutrition or supervision. Many have had their basic educational and emotional needs ignored. No matter what preceded their need for foster care placement, by the time children reach our door, they have suffered trauma.
Our Family Foster Care programs provide safe and nurturing homes to over 400 vulnerable children and teens in the Bronx as well as in other New York City boroughs, Westchester County and upstate New York. Our foster homes serve children within their home communities to provide continuity with friends, family connections and school. Through counseling, supervised home visits, parenting skills training and other supportive services, we strive to safely reunite children with their families as quickly as possible. Our services are dedicated to the growing and changing needs of the children in our care as well as those who support them and include Family Foster Care, Specialized Medical Family Foster Care, Therapeutic Family Foster Care, and Kinship Foster Care programs.
Our Family Foster Care program provides temporary homes for children of all ages who have suffered abuse or neglect and are in need of protection, safety, and support. Individual and family therapy is available to address emotional, behavioral and mental health issues. Children also receive comprehensive medical and dental care. Our staff works with both foster parents and birth parents to ease the transition of the children into our care and then back home again. Whenever possible, children are placed with relatives or close family connections such as godparents (Kinship Foster Care) to keep children connected to their families and reduce the trauma of sudden placement away from birth parents. Aiming to reunite families, we provide assistance to birth parents including substance abuse treatment, supportive housing, parenting skills workshops, job training and other supports that will eventually lead to the return of children to their birth parents and the preservation of the family unit.
Specialized Medical Family Foster Care serves children who are medically fragile and have conditions such as spina bifida, Down syndrome, heart and liver disorders, and those who are HIV-positive and/or have AIDS. These children are provided with additional medical case management, support services, and visiting nurses. Foster parents receive training on specific illnesses and disorders to best care for these particularly vulnerable children. Therapeutic Family Foster Care is a family-focused, community-based alternative to residential and institutional care for children who have serious emotional and/or behavioral conditions. Many require psychotropic medications as well as a therapeutic environment. Foster parents are given comprehensive training on behavior modification techniques as well as access to a 24-hour support team that assists with crisis intervention. Like our traditional Family Foster Care program, our Specialized Medical and Therapeutic Family Foster Care programs also provide assistance to birth families.
After foster care placement, we also provide transitional and continuing support to birth families upon reunification with their children. Our staff engages birth families in planning and refers parents to community providers for additional community services and supports. Parents and children may also find support through our Preventive Services program at the East Bronx Family Service Center.
To learn about becoming a foster parent, contact us at 1-888-701-6667 or firstname.lastname@example.org.