STEPS TO CREATE A FOSTER MINISTRY
I have been asked, “What are the steps to starting a foster ministry in a church or campus”?
- First, it requires leadership (advocates) – from 2 lay leaders (members) in a very small church to 8 in a large church or campus. They need to commit to a 2-year time frame and 2-3 hours per week.
- They will then need to be trained and equipped about how and what needs to be done to build out and manage the ministry – 8 hours of training.
- They will need to complete the Ready or Not devotional so they can lead foster volunteers through the study to help them determine if they are “called” to foster, adopt, or work with youth as a long-term mentor.
- A church staff oversite pastor needs to agree to guide, support, and assist ministry leaders with what they need. All should work under authority.
- After these steps are completed, an awareness program is developed in the church or campus to recruit workers to be care group helpers (not necessarily church members) and identify existing foster, adoptive parents, struggling families at risk of losing or keeping their children, and pregnant women who need help parenting a child they are keeping. The congregation should be served first and then outside groups.
- Care groups for families in need are created to provide prayer support, encouragement, physical help like babysitting for a parent’s night out, meals once a week, and help with tasks like doing the laundry or whatever the family needs and can be provided. A care group (WRAP) consists of 4-8 members, depending on the size and needs of the family being served. They need to commit to a 1-year term, at least.
- A team leader is identified and trained by the leaders to communicate with the family being served and manage the group. These groups provide care for the family groups listed above, prayer teams, other workers, mentors, social workers, trauma and family counselors, and CASA volunteers (Court Appointed Special Advocates).
- Each worker going out into the foster field needs to be trained and equipped so they will be aware and prepared for situations they will face. They can then be more confident, successful, and prepared for a long-term tenure of making a difference in the lives of foster children and family restoration.
- Small support and fellowship groups are needed for each type of worker to provide encouragement and education.
- Foster Coalition guides each ministry advocate group through this process. We help set up advocate training, provide training material for every volunteer position, awareness options, care group launching process, and training for each worker group.
- Foster Coalition provides guidance, structure, tools, and support only. We do not run the ministry – you do.
- The only cost for this is $75-$85 per advocate to go through the training program offered by Promise686. This structure is currently operating in over 1,000 churches. The software program provided makes the operation process simple. A large ministry can’t function without it effectively.
Ready to take the first step in starting a foster ministry at your church? Reach out to Foster Coalition today. Together, we can change the lives of vulnerable children, one family and one church at a time. Let’s make a lasting difference in our communities.