Ladies and gentlemen, we have lift off! Finally...
As I mentioned in this post, Trent and I had our intro meeting with DFPS yesterday evening (5/13). It was efficient, informative and encouraging. It was good and we are stoked. So, what's the new plan? Here are the steps in front of us now:
1. Complete and mail in a three page initial application. Already done!
2. CPS conducts background check assessment. Upon clearance, we will be provided with all our paperwork and invited to pre-service training. The next training in Waco is in August. At first we were bummed to hear that it's not sooner but actually that works out perfectly because June and July are packed as usual with youth ministry and August is currently empty so we can easily fit in 35 hours of training.
3. We will spend between now and August working on the small amount of paperwork due before training and working on the many projects and tweaks needed on our house. These include:
-Painting and furnishing children's rooms
-Various home improvement projects not really related to foster care but that we won't
have time to do once kids are here
-Moving our room to the front of the house because our current bedroom is at
the back of the house ten miles away from future children's rooms
-Get one of the windows in the front kid bedroom to open for fire safety since both
are painted shut
-Install a grate across the front of our fireplace
-Add a couple more smoke detectors
-Generally whip our errant shrubbery and flower beds into shape
-Get HVAC and fire extinguisher inspected
-Get a gun safe, separate ammunition lock box, medicine lock box, chemicals lock box...
I'll stop there...that's just a few.
4. During our training classes in August we will complete the bulk of our paperwork (though we have the list and will get a jump start on it before then) and will have our home visit/inspection from a Foster and Adoptive Home Development (FAD) social worker.
5. After that we will have our home screening which is a series of meetings to assess the overall suitability of us and our home.
6. Once all that is complete, the ball will be out of our court while our information is verified and approved, then we'll be licensed and ready for a placement.
So, we may have a child or children with us by October. That's quite a bit later than our original plan with the Bair Foundation, which was to be ready for a placement right now as I type, but we are ok with it. One thing we like the prospect of with DFPS as opposed to working with Bair is that with DFPS there is a lot more training required. Bair required about 16 hours but DFPS requires 35 and that doesn't include CPR and First Aid training on top of that. It's a lot of hours, but we need the information. Yes please, give us more training.
Overall, we feel really good about this and are ready to go. Praying that it all works out this time!