The foster care program is a state mandated service that provides a full range of casework, treatment and community services to a child who is abused or neglected. Foster care placement is intended to be a temporary, rather than a long-term, solution to family problems. The Juvenile and Domestic Relations Court hears petitions for custody. Specific foster care requirements are set forth in federal law and state laws.
Placements may be with a foster family, in a group living arrangement, in a residential treatment facility, with a relative, or in an independent living situation.
Services provided to children and their families may include counseling and treatment, day care, medical, education, employment, family planning, independent living, housing, respite care, legal, socialization and recreation services. Independent living services are services provided to older foster children (14 and older) to prepare them for transition into adulthood.