We need your help to double the rate of foster families in Idaho

June 14, 2024
Monty Prow, Deputy Director, Youth & Family Services

If you’re willing to open your heart and your home to a child in need, we need your help.

This month, I’m thrilled to join the Idaho Department of Health and Welfare (DHW) team. It is an honor to work alongside department staff and the dedicated, compassionate Idahoans who make a difference for Idaho kids every day.

For over two decades, I’ve dedicated my career to supporting youth and families, most recently serving as director of the Idaho Department of Juvenile Corrections.

Doubling rate of qualified Idaho foster families

Our collective efforts are critical to achieving DHW’s top-level goal of doubling the rate of qualified resource families. This ambitious target aligns with our shared philosophy of ensuring the right placement for the right length of time for each youth in the foster care system.

The goal is a two-part equation focusing on increasing both the number of available homes and safely decreasing the number of youths who need to be removed from their homes. Input and collaboration from foster families, soon-to-be foster families, and DHW staff will be essential as we work toward this goal.

Meeting the needs for Idaho children

With approximately 1,500 foster children in Idaho at any given moment, the demand for compassionate families is constant. These children depend on us to provide safe, nurturing environments during times of crisis.

All foster families make crucial contributions by opening their homes and hearts to children in need. Some foster families go further by providing for children who require complex levels of care.

The more complex children can have chronic medical problems, frequent or time-consuming transportation needs, behaviors requiring extra supervision, even substance use concerns.

The need for additional foster families in Idaho is constant, with a specific demand for those who can care for sibling groups, adolescents, and children with more complex needs. Foster parents provide a lifeline, offering stability and care to children who need it most.

If you are interested in becoming a foster parent, please call 2-1-1 or 800-926-2588, or visit DHW's foster care page for more information. Your willingness to open your home can make a profound difference in a child’s life.

Monty Prow is deputy director of Child, Youth & Family Services. He’s dedicated his career to supporting youth and families, most recently serving as director of the Idaho Department of Juvenile Corrections.

The Idaho Department of Health and Welfare is dedicated to strengthening the health, safety, and independence of Idahoans. Learn more at healthandwelfare.idaho.gov.

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