BASSETERRE, St. Kitts — The Foster Care Programme in St. Kitts is going to be reformed to expand its services and enhance the environment of safety and security for children under its purview.
Foster Care is a system whereby adults provide for the care of a child or children on a temporary basis when their birth parents are unable to care for them,” explains Gerald Connor, Acting Director of the Department of Probation and Child Protection Services.
Connor said the Foster Care Programme is very important to the department as it “ensures that our children have a loving and caring environment to live in.”
“We will be going on a campaign very shortly, to see how we can build our Foster Care Programme,’’ said Connor. He pointed out there are approximately 40 foster homes. More than 30 of these homes are currently being used to care for foster children.
“We will be doing a drive to recruit foster parents,” he said. “It is not just coming and signing up, but we do extensive background checks, medical checks, and you have to present certain documents before you can [be approved],” said Connor.
Successful applicants will then attend new training courses in various areas relating to childcare in order to become duly certified.
“… You will have to go through certain training that will be specialized and tailored to ensure that when you become a foster parent you [will] have the tools necessary to deal with children that are placed in your care,” said Connor.
The Foster Care Programme will also be rebranded The National Foster Care Programme to reflect the new energies to transform the service.