Fostering Success in Families
The choice to foster a child is an important decision. At Oregon Community Programs (OCP), we take extra care to place the right child into the right homes and for the right reasons.
OCP has been supporting foster children and their families with a full range of services since 1983. Our experienced team will give you the skills, knowledge, and support needed to provide foster children and youth with a safe, caring home.
We are devoted to helping families of all types – adoptive, biological and foster – stabilize and thrive.
Children in our community need your support!
Learn more about the OCP difference, and how you can foster a child and find success for both of you.
OCP works with children and families involved in juvenile justice, child welfare, mental health and developmental disability service systems. We have the ability to train and support families with kinship, foster care, respite, and adoptive placements. OCP has a dedicated team to certify foster parents and can support families where a child is already placed. This support is real – staff is available 24 / 7 / 365; because problems in families don’t just happen from 9 to 5. We know that our foster parents play an important role in the lives of foster children and are the key factor for successful treatment outcomes. That is why we provide regular training and support for our foster families.
Here’s what distinguishes OCP and our foster families:
A philosophy of commitment and belief in the children and families we support. We are in this for the long haul, and we know that with support, each child can be successful and go on to lead a productive, positive life. We emphasize the importance of a family’s community of support. Families and children who participate in any of our programs receive access to a network of caring professionals who are available to guide a family along the path of stability.
Our goal is to be the team that helps to turn lives around.
OCP works with children and families involved in juvenile justice, child welfare, mental health and developmental disability service systems. We have a skilled team to train and support families. OCP certifies foster parents and provides support, training, and resources to families where a child is already placed.
The kids can feel the difference, and so can our families.
Our approach is rooted in evidence-based treatments and services and underscored by the knowledge that positive reinforcement and support lead to the most enduring, healthy outcomes for children.
We don’t just place children and conduct a routine inspection: we provide a full range of wrap-around services for the kids and the families. They range from some basics, like respite care and 24-hour/7/365-day support, to deeper guidance that includes a multi-disciplinary support team that includes a therapist for the child and for the family. Daily check-ins provide continuity for the child and the family and allow for intervention before issues become larger.
Turn around team: You will have an assigned Program Supervisor and a team of treatment members to provide an enhanced level of support.. The Program Supervisor (PS) coordinates all aspects of the youth’s program while in your care. They communicate directly with the family, school, skills trainer, family therapist and/or youth therapist, so you can focus on the needs of the child in your home.
Part of the role the PS plays is a limit setter or “heavy” to minimize any negative information or conditions coming directly from the foster parent. This buffers the relationship between the foster parent and youth, by providing the foster parent the support and space they need. The youth might be encouraged to propose a plan with the PS. This experience helps teach the youth how to appropriately engage with a person in authority and advocate for oneself.
Our programs: Every aspect of OCP’s offerings is evidence-based, and for good reason: In times of strain or crisis, the support offered by professionals needs to be grounded by sound research and proven outcomes. In short, we counter rocky times with rock-solid support.
You are never alone!
We work hard to provide you with the special training, resources, and support necessary to meet the individual needs of the youth. Our dedicated staff is here to support you and provide ongoing help whenever you need it.
If you need support, guidance, information or just have questions about caring for the youth you foster, help is available 24-hours a day, 7 days week.
Children who are placed through OCP, and whose foster families receive support from OCP, are more likely to face a brighter future.
Types of Foster Homes Needed
The decision to be certified as a foster parent also involves deciding what type of care you are interested in providing. Your Program Supervisor will help you make a decision that is in the best interest of your family and the youth who will be placed into your care. OCP works with children and families involved in juvenile justice, child welfare, mental health and developmental disabilities.
Homes for Children involved with Child Welfare: Our regular foster care system is stretched thin and sometimes youth in the child welfare system need the extra support and one-on-one attention that an OCP family can give. Ages may range from 4-17. Most youth are in full day school and benefit from getting involved with sports, art, or other positive hobbies along with their OCP services.
Homes for Children involved with Oregon Youth Authority: Designed for youth age 12-18 who have made poor choices that have resulted in law violations or youth probation, our Monitor program has outstanding outcomes in significantly decreasing the likelihood that graduates will ever commit another crime. By teaching youth the skills they need to interact more positively with their families, peers, teachers, and the community in general, Monitor foster parents make a lifelong impact on the youth in their homes.
Homes for Children 3–6 years olds: Children who experience challenges being successful in previous foster care placement, and who qualify for EC Cares Services. Because children in this age range may only participate in short school days, it is helpful to have a caregiver with a flexible daytime schedule. Youth in early intervention receive a weekly school readiness group to build skills for a successful transition to kindergarten.
Respite Homes: Provide short-term relief care for other foster parents by caring for their foster children in your home one or more weekends a month. Our research tells us that rested and recharged foster parents are renewed to give their all to the kids. Our kids benefit too: by experiencing new adventures with your family.
Crisis Respite: OCP is launching a response to our communities crisis of placing foster youth in hotels. Make your home available to a youth in unexpected need. These youth typically say for a few days or up to 3 weeks while their DHS caseworker identifies a solid plan that meets their needs. Our crisis respite families will ensure these children have a soft place to land.
Would you like to be a foster parent? You may qualify if you:
- Are 21 years old or older
- Can pass a background check
- Have a flexible schedule
Love Comes in Many Forms
Just like kids, families come in many different forms: traditional two-parent families, single parents, same-sex couples, and retired and widowed people. We welcome people who don’t have children of their own, as well as those with their own (almost) full house.
We welcome foster parent applications from Oregon residents of all races and ethnicities, religious affiliations, sexual orientations, and ages who meet our certification criteria.
We know that positive support leads to positive outcomes.
Children living in foster care may be infants, toddlers, preschoolers, grade-school age, or teenagers. They come from many types of backgrounds, cultures, and families. They are like other children, each with their own special personality, abilities, interests, and potential. OCP is committed to recruiting a diverse pool of foster families who can be strong role models for our clients and keep them connected with their cultural backgrounds.
Working with LGBTQ+ Youth
National research has shown that children and teens who identify as LGBTQ+ are over-represented in the foster care system. Young people who identify as LGBTQ+ enter foster care for many of the same reasons as a non-LGBTQ+ youth in care. However, many children and teens who are LGBTQ+ have the added layer of trauma that comes with being rejected or mistreated because of their sexual orientation, gender identity or gender expression.
What does it mean that LGBTQ+ youth are “over-represented” in foster care? This means that the percentage of youth in foster care who are LGBTQ-identified is larger than the percentage of LGBTQ+ youth in the general youth population. LGBTQ+ youth in foster care also face disparities – differences in experiences in care or treatment by the system.
Like all young people, children and teens who identify as LGBTQ+ in foster care need the support of a nurturing family to help them grow into healthy adults. Foster parents can provide this support and safe, nurturing home where children and teens feel comfortable expressing themselves and to become the person they are meant to be.
OCP believes these risks can be mitigated by foster families who are willing to nurture and protect the health, safety, and well-being of these young people. It is essential to provide stable, supportive, and welcoming families for LGBTQ+ adolescents, where youth can develop the strength and self-confidence they need to become successful adults. Contact us to learn more.
If you have a passion for helping kids and are looking to give back to your community, fostering could be a good fit for you!
Join us for a live, no-obligation, virtual Q&A session and discover what sets us apart from other agencies.