Step-by-Step Guide: Becoming a Foster Parent in Colorado

Step-by-Step Guide: Becoming a Foster Parent in Colorado

Step-by-Step Guide: Becoming a Foster Parent in Colorado


Becoming a foster parent is a rewarding and life-changing experience. If you live in Colorado and are interested in opening your heart and home to a child in need, this step-by-step guide will provide you with all the information you need to navigate the process.

Step 1: Research and Preparation

Before embarking on the journey of becoming a foster parent, it is essential to do thorough research and prepare yourself for the responsibilities that come with it. Here are some key steps to follow:

  1. Learn about the foster care system in Colorado: Familiarize yourself with the laws, regulations, and requirements set by the Colorado Department of Human Services (CDHS) for foster parents.
  2. Attend informational meetings: CDHS regularly organizes informational meetings where you can learn more about the foster care system, the application process, and the support available to foster parents.
  3. Assess your readiness: Reflect on your personal circumstances, including your emotional readiness, financial stability, and support system. Becoming a foster parent requires a significant commitment, so it’s important to ensure you are prepared.

Step 2: Application and Background Checks

Once you have completed your research and feel ready to proceed, the next step is to submit an application and undergo background checks. Here’s what you need to do:

  1. Contact a licensed foster care agency: Reach out to a licensed foster care agency in Colorado to initiate the application process. They will provide you with the necessary forms and guide you through the requirements.
  2. Complete the application: Fill out the application form provided by the agency. This form will require you to provide personal information, including your background, employment history, and references.
  3. Undergo background checks: As part of the application process, you will be required to undergo various background checks, including criminal record checks and child abuse and neglect registry checks. These checks are crucial to ensure the safety and well-being of the children in foster care.

Step 3: Training and Home Study

Once your application has been accepted and your background checks have cleared, you will need to complete training and undergo a home study. Here’s what you can expect:


Colorado requires all prospective foster parents to complete pre-service training. This training is designed to equip you with the necessary knowledge and skills to provide a safe and nurturing environment for the children in your care. The training covers topics such as child development, trauma-informed care, and the foster care system.

Home Study

A home study is a comprehensive assessment of your home and family life conducted by a licensed social worker. The purpose of the home study is to evaluate your suitability as a foster parent. During the home study, the social worker will interview you, your family members, and conduct a thorough inspection of your home. They will also assess your ability to meet the emotional, physical, and developmental needs of a foster child.

Step 4: Licensing and Placement

Once you have successfully completed the training and home study, you will be eligible for licensing as a foster parent. Here’s what you need to know:

  • Licensing process: The licensing process involves submitting the necessary paperwork, including medical clearances, financial statements, and personal references. The licensing agency will review your application and conduct additional checks before granting you a foster care license.
  • Placement: Once licensed, you will be matched with a child in need of foster care. The placement process takes into consideration factors such as the child’s age, needs, and your preferences. The agency will provide ongoing support and supervision throughout the placement.


Becoming a foster parent in Colorado is a step-by-step process that requires research, preparation, and commitment. By following this guide, you will be well-equipped to navigate the journey and provide a loving and supportive home for a child in need. Remember, the impact you can make as a foster parent is immeasurable, and the rewards are truly life-changing.

Useful Resources
Resource Contact Information
Colorado Department of Human Services Website:
Phone: 1-800-678-0648
Colorado Foster Care and Adoption Website:
Phone: 1-800-451-5246