Today, over 300 Fairfax County children are in foster care. The
Foster Care and Adoption Program offers placements for these
children and services to help their families. When a child cannot
return home safely, we seek adoption or other permanent placement.
What is the difference between foster care and adoption?
Foster care is the temporary placing of a child outside the
child's home. This may occur as a result of abuse, neglect or other
circumstances that put the child at risk, or when parents decide
they cannot care for their child. During this time, family problems
are addressed so that the child can return home safely, or plans
are made for permanent placement of the child outside his or her
Adoption meets the needs of children for permanent
Who can foster and adopt?
Resources provided . . .
Training and supportive services
Ordinary people who . . .
Care about children
Want to make a difference in children's lives and futures
Are 21 or older
May be married, single, or divorced
May work outside the home
Must be able to provide a safe, loving home
Ways to be a foster parent or mentor
Foster parents offer children safety and stability until children
can return to their families or go to permanent homes. Foster
families offer different types of care:
Regular Foster Home—Children stay for any
length of time, often one to two years.
Resource Home—These families are willing to
both foster and adopt a child, depending on the child’s needs.
Child-Specific—Children are placed with
relatives or close friends who know the children’s background
Mentor Home—These families give young adults
aged 16 to 20 temporary housing and valuable guidance in
choosing careers, extending education, and building practical
Fairfax Families4Kids—If you would like to
spend time engaged in recreational, educational, and social
activities with children who are currently in foster care in
Fairfax County, become a volunteer or mentor with Fairfax
Supports for Foster Parents
Our foster parents receive . . .
Reimbursement for room, board, clothing and related expenses
Ongoing training and support
monthly support group
All medical and dental care through Medicaid or other sources
Services the child may need such as
school fees and trips
Parenting through adoption
Children need families to call their own. With permanent homes
come lifelong support systems, love, and a brighter future. More
than 70 percent of our adoptive families begin as foster parents,
then commit to adopting the child in their care. Some children in
Fairfax County are still awaiting adoptive homes. Many are school
aged and part of sibling groups.
“There’s always the uncertainty of what will happen to the child
in the end, but an element of bonding takes place right away.
With my daughters, it was love at first sight.”
~ David Vasquez,
"When I’m playing basketball and I can hear my mom in the
crowd ... I feel happy because somebody is there for me when I’m
at my best."
"Kids come in here and at first they’re frightened, scared.
But you love them and you nurture them, and they leave a completely
~ Margaret Taylor,
It's the most demanding job
you’ll ever love
A child in your community needs you.
The children in our care are creative, intelligent, and engaging.
All of them are looking for a place to call home.