Becoming a Foster Parent in Montana
- Who Are the Children
- Who Can Be a Foster Parent
- What Is Expected of Foster Parents
- Frequently Asked Questions
- More Information
- Foster Care Forms
The Child and Family Services Division (CFSD) of the state Department of Public Health and Human Services is responsible for providing protective services to children. Foster care is one such service.
The children who are placed in foster care by CFSD range in age from infants to teenagers. They come from many different backgrounds and reflect the cultural diversity of the state. On June 30, 2020, 3,456 Montana children were in foster care because they had been abused, neglected, or abandoned by their parents or other caretakers.
Many of the children in foster care are insecure, frightened, confused, and angry about what has happened to them. Emotional, behavioral, mental, or physical problems related to the abuse or neglect are common.
Anyone who is at least 18 years of age and in good physical and mental health may apply to become a foster parent. Single people, couples, people with or without children, all may be eligible. What is most important is the ability to provide an environment that protects and promotes the well-being of a child or children.
Some important characteristics of foster parents are strong parenting skills (or the ability and willingness to develop these skills), time and energy to invest in a child's life, and a genuine concern for the well-being of children and their families.
Applicants also must:
- Have lived together for at least 24 months in the case of couples.
- Have enough income to support their current household without relying on foster-care reimbursement.
- Complete training program prior to licensure.
- Provide references that can attest to their appropriateness to provide foster care for children.
- Undergo screening for criminal records and child protective service records.
- Undergo an assessment of their stability and their home's safety.
Foster parents are expected to provide for the physical and emotional needs of children placed in their home and provide a safe and stable home environment. Foster parents are expected to work closely with the child's protective services specialist.
To learn more about becoming a licensed foster parent, please call 1-866-936-7837 (866-9FOSTER) or fill out the Adopt US Kids Request to be contacted form
- A Step-by-Step Guide for Becoming a Licensed Foster Care Provider
- Deciding to Become a Foster Parent
- What You Need to Know About Background Checks
To report a possible case of child abuse or neglect, call toll-free
1 (866) 820-5437.
Programs & Services
- Adoption in Montana
- Becoming a Foster Parent
- Facilities and School Forms
- Foster Parent Training
- Child Protective Service Background Checks
- Foster Care Independence Program
- Services to Native American Children and Families
- State Licensed, Private Adoption Agencies
- Title IV-B and AV Contract Matrix Information
- Title IV-E Guardianship Assistance Program- State Plan
- Interstate Compact on the Placement of Children (ICPC)