Thursday, December 13, 2012

When Your Foster Agency Drops Out From Under You

We've hit a speed bump.  Well, actually, for now it feels more like we've run into a brick wall...

We were told yesterday that the Waco office of our foster care agency, the Bair Foundation, is closing down.   We don't know why and apparently it is a new development.  We dropped off a bunch of completed paperwork at lunch yesterday and asked the secretary if the January training schedule is out yet.  She was pretty wishy washy about it but said it was not.  Later in the day I emailed the director a random question and he responded by telling us that the office is closing.  I did not like that answer to my question... 

So, now what do we do?

Option 1:  There is another agency in town called Arrow Child & Family Ministries that has agreed to take on Bair's foster families, but it looks like Arrow specializes in higher level of care kids, "those that have suffered the most abuse" as their website says.  We're not sure that we're ready for that. Those kids need experienced foster parents or maybe even a stay at home parent.  But all we know about Arrow is based on a few brief, frantic trips to their website, so we'll of course dig deeper than that.

Option 2:  We can work directly with the state's Department of Family Protective Services and not have an agency.  This is not uncommon and we are not immediately opposed to the idea, though we liked the idea of having an agency as a Christian network of support and a middle man between us and the state. 

Option 3:  Ok God, did you shut this door in our face on purpose? Are you nudging us in a different direction?

The Bair director told us that the paperwork and training we have completed so far likely will not transfer to another agency or the state, since everyone has their own version of paperwork.  I have kept copies of everything we have turned in so far, so I guess we could kind of regurgitate the information onto someone else's similar forms from that. But a lot of hours of work will have to be repeated.  We will likely have to call on family, friends and employers once again to repeat the reference packets they already graciously spent time on once.  We canceled our doctor appointments for physicals tomorrow. We erased TB tests at the Health District from our immediate to do list.  I halted my research on how to get FBI fingerprints.  We'll have to start over with a new checklist and a new timeline. 

We are frustrated.  We know we'll figure it out somehow, but we are frustrated.  We were rocking and rolling on our paperwork and making a big push this month to get a lot done, our hearts were really getting on board with this idea and we were beginning to feel emotionally ready to have children in our home.    But now we are taking steps backwards instead.  Right now we feel like we are back to square one.

We knew we were signing up for crazy, but we didn't expect our agency to suddenly drop out from under us...

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