Office of Foster and Adoptive Support and Training

The importance of support and specialized training for foster/adoptive parents and relative caregivers cannot be overstated. The Office of Foster and Adoptive Support and Training understands this need and the unique challenges these caregivers face. As such, the Office of Foster and Adoptive Support and Training has been designing and delivering innovative, evidence-based programs and services to meet these needs for nearly two decades. Through an array of peer support services and training modalities, the Office of Foster and Adoptive Support and Training increases parenting competencies, improves caregivers’ coping skills, and elevates the level of care provided.

Adoption Support for Kentucky (ASK)

Program Contact: Lauren Lynch (lauren.lynch@uky.edu)

Adoption Support for Kentucky (ASK) is an award-winning peer support program that has been serving families for nearly two decades. Using innovative training modalities and inclusive support group practices, ASK uniquely meets the needs of foster, adoptive, relative, and fictive-kin caregivers throughout the Commonwealth. Adoption Support for Kentucky (ASK) specializes in the utilization of support groups to offer pre and post-adoptive support and services to foster parents. ASK provides the opportunity to share resources, suggestions, frustrations, and successes with those who share the unique experience of adoption. ASK strives to prevent pre-adoption disruption and post-adoption dissolution through peer-led support and training.

Foster Parent Mentor Program

Program Contact: Jeff Damron (ljdamr2@uky.edu) and Tamikia Dumas (tamikia.dumas@uky.edu)

It’s no secret…all transformation, growth, and development happen best within a positive ongoing relationship! The Foster Parent Mentor Program, in cooperation with the Cabinet for Health and Family Services, links the State’s newly approved Foster Parents with a trained Mentor for their first six months of service to bolster confidence and satisfaction as they adjust to their new roles and responsibilities.

The Foster Parent Mentor Program specializes in one-on-one, short-term, intensive coaching relationships, which provide newly approved Foster Parents emotional encouragement, skill reinforcement, and parenting strategies unique to providing out-of-home care so as to enhance the quality of care provided and stabilize initial placements.

Medically Complex Training Program

Program Contact: Lisa Casebier (lisa.casebier@uky.edu)

The mission of the Medically Complex Training Program is to provide training to resource parents in Kentucky caring for children in out-of-home care with complex medical needs.

Since 2003, the program has developed, coordinated, and conducted this type of training for foster/adoptive parents and social service workers statewide. The guidelines for training content are established by the Cabinet for Health and Family Services Department for Community Based Services (DCBS) Standards of Practice, as well as Kentucky law.

The program provides an online orientation and the initial training, Join Hands Together, for those foster/adoptive homes desiring certification to care for children who are medically complex. Ongoing training is provided through two statewide annual training events. At these events, 12 hours of ongoing training is provided. Foster/adoptive parents have the opportunity to select from a variety of training topics. This allows them to choose the information most relevant to the needs of the child in their care.

Foster Parent Training Program

Program Contact: Carla Jordan (carla.jordan@uky.edu)

The Foster Parent Training Program is dedicated to the development and delivery of quality training to meet the needs of foster/adoptive parents serving the Commonwealth.

These needs are determined through consultation with the Department for Community Based Services, other programs serving foster/adoptive families, community partners, and most importantly, foster parents.

The program provides an array of training and support services, including curricula development and training delivery for both foster/adoptive parents and child welfare professionals, the development and distribution of medical passports and certificates of training completion, and the administration of a hotline any foster/adoptive parent can call to receive support and resources. The program’s ultimate goal through the provision of all of these services is to promote and safety and well-being of Kentucky’s children.

Resources

Check out free resources and foster parenting information at FAST Help, a resource service product from the Training Resource Center.

FAST Hotline

1-833-UKY-FAST (1-833-859-3278)

The Foster/Adoptive Support and Training (FAST) Hotline is for any foster/adoptive parent seeking support, resources, and information. The toll-free hotline is available Monday through Friday from 8am to 5pm.