Support for Foster Parents

Fostering a child can be one of the most rewarding experiences in an individual’s life. Fostering can also be demanding and present many challenges. As a foster parent, you are part of a team, and if you feel uncertain about a situation or require further information or support, you should seek help. In addition to talking to your resource social worker and the child’s social worker, several other support services are available to assist you in the challenging task of parenting.

Foster Parent Support Line is a confidential service funded by MCFD and professionally staffed to provide assistance to foster parents throughout the province.

You can call the support line toll-free at 1 888 495-4440, Monday to Friday from 4:00 pm to 12:45 am, and on weekends and statutory holidays from 8:00 am to 12:45 am. If calling outside these hours leave a message and a staff member will return your call as soon as possible.

In Your Grasp is an on-line resource database of community organizations and supports. Organized by region and service type, this on-line resource provides caregivers, adoptive parents, Ministry workers, other service providers and the general public immediate access to information regarding community support services available throughout British Columbia.

The BC Federation of Foster Parent Associations (BCFFPA) is a provincial organization run by foster parents. It supports foster families in their work as caregivers and advocates for quality service for children in care.

The BCFFPA has about 70 local associations across British Columbia. They provide education and training, organize social activities for foster families, support them with ‘buddy systems’ and self-help groups, and work in partnership with ministry staff on special programs or projects. The BCFFPA operates the Fosterline 1 800 663-9999.

The Federation of Aboriginal Foster Parents (FAFP) is a non-profit organization run by and for aboriginal foster parents throughout British Columbia. They work in partnership with the BC Federation of Foster Parents Associations to support aboriginal parents – and non-aboriginal people caring for aboriginal children – in ways that respect aboriginal culture and tradition.

The Representative for Children and Youth supports children, youth and families who need help in dealing with the child welfare system, and advocates for changes to the system itself. If a foster parent is concerned that a child or youth may have a need or issue that is not adequately being addressed, the representative may have a role. For more information visit their website or call 1 800 476-3933.

The Public Guardian and Trustee of British Columbia, Children and Youth Services, upholds legal and financial rights of children under the age of 19 by ensuring adequate legal representation and also by holding and administering funds intrust for children and youth.

The Ombudsperson of BC receives inquiries and complaints about the practices and services provided by public agencies. While not an advocate, the Ombudsperson can conduct impartial and confidential investigations to determine if a public agency is being fair to the people it serves.