New foster parent applications are on pause from Nov. 1, 2022 - Mar. 1, 2023.
This does not apply to kinship applications, license renewals, and those getting licensed through a child placing agency. 

Support & Resources

Get Support

Crisis Support Lines for Foster Parents & Kinship Caregivers

  • Foster Parent & Caregiver Support line - 1-800-301-1868
    The Foster Parent & Caregiver Support Line is answered by DCYF Central Intake caseworkers who can offer behavior management advice, problem-solving tips, and a listening ear.
    5 p.m. - 8 a.m. Monday through Friday and all weekend hours for emergencies.
  • Call your local Child Welfare Office 8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. Mon – Fri
  • Call a Washington State Mental Health crisis line for local assistance with a mental health crisis.
  • The Health Care Authority and Behavioral Health Administrative Services Organizations provide regional mental health crisis lines.  The phone lines are:
    • Staffed 24/7/365
    • Available to all Washingtonians (regardless of insurance or income level)

    Find the crisis line for your county

On-Going Support

  • The Alliance Caregiver Retention, Education, and Support, or CaRES, program is available to all foster parents and kinship caregivers in Washington State. CaRES mentors reach out to new foster parents when they get licensed and welcome their first placement, and kinship caregivers hear from CaRES when a kinship child is placed in the home. Resources, different types of support groups, and events are all available!
  • Coordinated Care’s Apple Health Core Connections (AHCC) is the managed health care plan for young people who are currently or have previously experienced foster care. AHCC provides care coordination, caregiver training, and other programs.

Foster Parent Reimbursement and Liability Plans

Support During an LD-CPS or Licensing Investigation

If you are a current foster parent and you’re experiencing an LD-CPS investigation or licensing investigation and are seeking support and neutral advice, please get in touch with the Foster Intervention and Retention Support Team (FIRST).

Complaint and Concern Resources

  • Constituent Relations
    • Constituent Relations provides a fair and courteous process for resolving complaints relating to child protection and child welfare cases, foster home and child care licensing, child care programs, and juvenile rehabilitation services.
    • 800-723-4831 or email constrelations@dcyf.wa.gov
  • Office of the Family and Children’s Ombuds
    • The Family and Children’s Ombuds is another state office that is separate from DCYF. They investigate complaints about DCYF actions or inaction that involve:
      • Any child at risk of abuse, neglect, or other harm.
      • A child or parent involved with child protection or child welfare services.
      • The safety or welfare of children in state care.
    • Online Complaint Form
    • 1-800-571-7321

Resources

Pass Programs

Across Washington State, there are organizations and groups that provide discounts and free opportunities to foster parents and kinship caregivers. These pass programs listed below are available to all caregivers statewide. The CaRES guide provides additional information about regional activities and clothing closets, too!

Community Organizations

  • Family Connections Program at Amara brings parents, foster parents, and kinship caregivers together to talk about a child or siblings. Parents are matched with a parent mentor, and foster parents and kinship caregivers are matched with a peer mentor so that together the parent and caregiver can develop a partnership that benefits the child or siblings. Visit the Family Connections Program to learn more and to review resources, tips, and quick but powerful training.
  • Foster Parent Alliance of Washington State, or FPAWS, supports and advocates for foster parents and kinship caregivers across Washington. FPAWS runs a foster care support line that provides referral and information sharing and is available at 1-800-391-CARE or 1-800-391-2273. For general information, visit the FPAWS website at https://fpaws.org/ or email fpaws@fpaws.org.
  • The Seattle, Spokane, and Olympic Peninsula Angels offer support to children, youth, and caregivers through their Dare to Dream youth mentorship program and the Love Box program, which includes intentional giving, relationship building, and mentorship with foster parents. Learn more about their programs and organization by visiting the chapter websites provided below:
  • Sibling Strong is a non-profit organization that seeks to create or reunite siblings that have been separated because of a foster care, kinship, or adoption experience. Their most well-known program is Camp to Belong which brings siblings from across Washington State together for a week of summer camp activities focused on building sibling connections. Sibling Strong offers other programs, too, throughout the year.
  • Fosterful volunteers provide activities, snacks, and supervision to children and youth who are spending time in a DCYF office, specifically when they are first removed from their parents.
  • Washington Fosters provides resources and helpful tools for those considering becoming a foster parent.

Helpful Websites