Fostering Conversations with Utah Foster Care

Fostering Conversations with Utah Foster Care

Utah Foster Care guides real and raw conversations about parenting for bio, foster, adoptive or blended families to increase understanding of issues we all experience as families. Utah Foster Care's mission is to develop innovative strategies to help recruit, train, and retain foster families.

Episodes

May 10, 2022 37 min

Did you know that you don’t have to be married to foster or adopt children in Utah? It’s true, some of our best foster families are lead by single parents. Local single foster parents, Kristen and Michael share their experiences fostering —what it’s like, why they do it, and how to get started.

According to a report from The Adoption and Foster Care Analysis and Reporting System, just under 15,000 single women and nearly 2,000 sing...
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Transracial adoption, foster care, and interracial marriages create unique experiences for children and parents in Utah. Often, families need help navigating multiple cultures.  Stephanie Draper found herself in that situation as a teenager – luckily, she had a supportive parent. Together with Bri Ray, Stephanie founded the organization Raising Me, formerly known as Project Black Girl. Their mission is to provide hybrid education ...
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March 1, 2022 45 min
Join us for a candid conversation with DCFS caseworkers and foster parents to understand how DCFS works in order to strengthen partnerships in support of children and families in care. Every contact with your caseworker is an opportunity to strengthen your family. Learn more about the Division of Child and Family Services here.

Want to learn more about becoming a Foster Parent? 

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February 1, 2022 26 min

Substance Use disorder by adults is one of the leading reasons why children are removed from their homes and put into state custody. In Utah, substance use is a contributing factor in more than 60% of the cases where children are removed from their homes - much higher than the national average. The good news is that research indicates recovery from substance use disorder is achievable and common. So, it’s important to understand th...

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January 6, 2022 25 min
Utah Foster Care believes every child deserves a safe home with a loving family. By becoming a foster parent, you are also sharing your strength, your home, and your future—making a commitment to help, heal, and enrich the lives of abused and neglected children. Children in foster care receive medical, dental, and mental health care through Medicaid. They qualify for free school lunches and various school fee waivers. Younger chil...
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December 7, 2021 24 min
Suicide is a public health problem and the leading cause of death in the United States. Suicide can also be prevented — more investment in suicide prevention, education, and research will prevent the untimely deaths of thousands of Americans each year.  In Utah, suicide is the #1 leading cause of death for young people ages 10-24.  There are many factors that contribute to suicide. The goal of suicide prevention is to reduce those ...
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November 2, 2021 48 min
In Utah, there are around 2,700 children in foster care at any given time and some 1,300 licensed foster/adoptive families. Children in foster care often have special needs due to neglect, abuse or separation. Substance abuse is a contributing factor in many foster care cases. Parenting a child with trauma can be challenging.  Luckily, our understandings of neuroscience gives us hope. In their collaborative book, 'What Happene...
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"The number of cases of children entering the foster care system due to parental drug use has more than doubled since 2000, according to research published in JAMA Pediatrics [...] A lot of the work out there [on the opioid epidemic] has focused on mortality and overdoses and how it affects adults," says Angelica Meinhofer, instructor in health care policy and research at Weill Cornell Medicine. "[It's] less known h...
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A college or trade school degree can be a game changer for young people who have experienced foster care.  In the September edition of our Fostering Conversations Podcast, we explore an innovative program at the University of Utah, designed to shepherd students to achieve success in higher education. For more information on these programs, please visit their respective websites below: First Star--Accepts 9th graders with an open ...
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  "Professionals who work with youth need to understand the lives and unique challenges of the LGBTQ youth they serve and the implications of policies, practices, and organizational climates on their experiences and outcomes. Many resources are available for caregivers and others in the child welfare workforce to develop competency and learn how to talk positively about issues that affect LGBTQ youth, including providing safe ...
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July 7, 2021 28 min
Did you know that 1 in 10 teens say that they don't have a trusted adult that they can turn to? The Utah Department of Health Family and Youth Outreach are seeking to change that statistic.  This month we are talking with Elizabeth Gerke from the Teen Speak program.  This training provides parents or other trusted adults strategies to communicate with youth. Being or becoming an ‘Askable Adult’ includes creating a safe environm...
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June 14, 2021 32 min

“Supporting a child and their family in reunification is a selfless and loving gift that foster parents offer to thousands of families every year. You're not just fostering reunification, you're fostering a future in which parents and their children can thrive" (Source).

Why Reunification is so important:

  • Positive impact on parents
  • Better Child Development Outcomes
  • Less Stressful for Children
  • Maintains Connections 
  • ABA Ce...

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    May is National Foster Care month! Join with us in honoring our most valuable resource: Foster Parents. This month's podcast focuses on where Utah's welfare system has come from, and the positive direction it is heading.  What was once seen as, merely, a protective measure is now being seen through the lens of trauma and healing.  Through that lens, strengthening the adults in a child's life becomes the focus for heali...
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    **UPDATE** We received some valuable feedback from members of the Autistic community that we wanted to share. The puzzle piece and color blue are no longer symbols the community recognizes.  The new symbol is the infinity sign and the colors are red or gold.  We were also made aware that the organization we linked in the show notes had some harmful ideologies and practices. We are updating our image and links to reflect this new in...
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    March 2, 2021 30 min
    Words have weight.  Words matter. By choosing sensitive language, we can positively influence both mental health and self-image of youth in foster care. With guests China Darrington and Terra Cooper. For more resources related to the Birth and Foster Parent Partnership visit the Children's Trust Fund Alliance   The Children’s Trust Fund Alliance works with organizations and community groups interested in hosting Strategic S...
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    February 8, 2021 33 min
    What is resiliency and how can you foster it in your children? Studies have shown you need more than a positive mental attitude to truly become resilient. Listen as two local foster moms and local researcher Cinda Morgan discuss the core concepts behind developing resiliency in a child, especially one who has experienced trauma. Want to learn more about becoming a foster parent in Utah?  
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    February 8, 2021 33 min
    Foster parents are often caring, compassionate people who want to improve the lives of children. But too often, they don’t extend that same compassion to themselves. Professionals Dr. Jennifer Ayres and Dr. Kristie Engel share guidance on nurturing self-compassion and preventing burnout. Guests: Jennifer Ayres, Ph.D., clinical psychologist Kristie Engel, Ph.D., clinical psychologist Online foster parent support groups in Utah: ht...
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    Trauma, grief, loss, and uncertainty can make what is meant to be a joy-filled season, a sometimes triggering and painful one. Our friends Dan and Hope from Hope & Healing Child and Family Counseling share insight into why this happens, what it can look like, and how to help ease and prepare for these moments.

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    November 3, 2020 32 min

    People can choose to adopt to build their families. Others become foster parents and provide permanent homes for children who can’t reunify with their families.

    Whatever the reasons foster-adoptive parents Ryan and Suzie-Marie McCorriston learned being a foster parent changes your perspective forever. Join them, along with foster-adoptive mom Amy Bates, as they share their adoption stories.

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    Foster parents are encouraged in our classes to interact with relatives of the children in their care. But how do you handle that relationship and why is it important? Hear from a kinship provider, who’s also been a foster parent and from a representative of Utah’s Kinship Coalition.

    Guests: Kinship provider and former foster mom Jeanie Pettit and Bacall Hincks, Grandfamilies Program Director for Children’s Service Society of Utah

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