Welcome to this months issue of Foster Parent 411!

Ah June…the beginning of lazy summer days, sunshine and relaxation!  For some, summer is also a time for family vacations.  A time to spend together away from the hustle and bustle of everyday life.  Foster families are encouraged to take their foster children on vacation.  However, children cannot miss parenting time, or medical and/or mental health appointments, so please plan accordingly.  And, as always, keep the child’s foster care worker informed!
If you need substitute care, please try to arrange yourselves.  However, if you are unable, please contact your foster care worker or licensing specialist at least 3 business days in advance of your need and we will try to help.  With that being said, we are in need of foster families willing to provide substitute care!  Please contact Mackenzie Vilmont, Placement Specialist at 616.451.2021 if you are willing and able to provide substitute care to other DABSJ foster families.

Thank you for all that you do!
- Deb Disler, Licensing Manager

We reward families with $200 when they successfully recruit a family who becomes licensed as a foster parent or is approved to adopt.  If you know someone interested in foster care or adoption, you can connect them with Lisa Puente at
R 400.9413 Substitute care. Rule 413.
(1) A foster parent shall follow the agency’s substitute care policy.
(2) A foster parent shall ensure that appropriate care and supervision are provided for foster children at all times consistent with the child’s treatment plan.
(3) A foster parent shall identify a primary substitute caregiver who agrees to follow the policies of the certifying agency

Foster Parents are responsible at all times for providing adequate supervision of foster children in their care.  The agency recognizes that there will be times in which substitute care will be needed. 

Substitute Care is defined as care and supervision of a foster child in the absence of the foster parent for any length of time.  Substitute care is not a change in the child’s placement and the foster parent must remain available to the substitute care provider.  Furthermore, substitute care cannot interfere with the child’s case plan, such as mental or physical health treatment or court-ordered requirements, such as parenting time.  The foster parent is responsible for notifying any substitute care provider of the Agency’s policies relating to care and supervision of the foster child.  The substitute care provider must follow these policies. Any planned substitute care shall be consistent with the child’s treatment plan. 

Conditions when substitute care may be needed include, but are not limited to:
  • Whenever the foster parent is at work
  • Before and after school or when school is not in session, including breaks, holidays and snow days
  • Teens who have emotional or behavioral concerns and cannot be left alone
  • When foster parent must sleep during the day due to work schedule or illness
  • When the foster parent must be away from the home overnight
  • When the foster parent must be away for appointments, meetings, social events, etc.
  • When the foster parent needs reasonable relief and respite (Foster Parent Bill of Rights)
Qualifications for all substitute care providers (see overnights on the next page for more)
Foster Parents should select someone with whom they would trust their own children and:
  • Must be “cleared” via a criminal history and Children’s Protective Services check (agency will complete after being provided needed documents/information)
  • Must be approved by the foster child’s caseworker.
  • Must be of Good Moral Character and capable of meeting the needs of the foster child.
  • Must be 18 years old
(Exception:  a mature, competent teen family member, 16 years of age or older, may be used for short periods of time (4 hours or less, no overnight care) as a babysitter for children age 2-12 with no medical, emotional or behavioral needs with prior approval by the child’s foster care worker).
Welcome to the newest staff of our foster care team!
  • Mariah Arnold
Thank you to those staff who are moving on from their time in foster care:
  • Jessica Stanyer

Are you looking for a FREE family event? Head downtown to 555 Monroe NW for Movies On Monroe - an outdoor movie experience that is sure to be emmoerable and a whole lot of fun. 

The event area opens at 6pm, and you will want to find a seat early as space fills up quickly. 


Experience a full day of free general admission to the Grand Rapids Art Museum each week, Tuesdays from 10am-5pm and Thursday Nights from 5-9pm. 

Kids can enjoy free flicks this summer at Celebration Cinema at Woodland Mall, 3195 28th Street SE. 

The deal is good for kids 12 and under and runs every Friday from June 7 to August 23, 2019. Admission for kids 12 and under is free and tickets cost just $5 for everyone else.
Don't forget to use Foster Parent Central as your guide to all things DABSJ foster care! There you will find upcoming training's (like TIP or Verbal De-escalation), reading suggestions, and more!

Is there more you would like to see in this monthly newsletter? Let us know!
Copyright © 2019 D.A. Blodgett - St. John's, All rights reserved.

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