WAYS YOU CAN HELP!
Find a Level of Commitment that's right for you:
Foster | Respite Care | Mentor | Volunteer
Next to adoption, this is the highest level of care and requires the most preparation. Requirements include attending an open house or informational session that also includes the preliminary interview. This is followed by a follow up interview, background check and home study. If those are completed successfully, you would then participate in a 9 week foster parent training (one night a week for 9 weeks). This training is also part of the interview process. Once the training is completed successfully, you would be licensed and could then have children or youth placed with you. 45 Hours of additional post licensing training is also required within 18 months but there is a lot of flexibility on what courses and when you would do them. Thereafter, foster parents are required to do 9 hours per year. Individuals interested in adopting go though exactly the same training and background checks as those interested in Fostering. In addition, a child placed for adoption with you must remain in care with you for a minimum of one year prior to the finalization of the adoption. Contact us for more information.
This is a new addition to foster parent options and is a briefer kind of fostering – you take in a child/youth or children for a few days, a week, two weeks – whenever their current caretakers need respite for various reasons. The background, home study and other requirements are the same as Fostering, but the training is briefer (about 9 hours all together). Contact us for more information.
The Safe Harbor Project Mentoring Program seeks to expand the quality of life benefits of mentoring to an additional group of at-risk youth – Lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) youth. LGBT youth meet all of the requirements for inclusion in an “at risk” or “high risk” category. All too often, youth who are (or who are perceived to be) LGBT are met with harassment and violence at home, at school, and in the community at large. The social isolation and stigma attached to sexual minority status leads to significantly higher rates of substance abuse, suicide attempts and completions; truancy; school drop-outs; running away and homelessness. For a variety of reasons, existing programs – virtually without exception – overlook or ignore the needs of LGBT adolescents. Understanding the issues that these young people face can create an environment where they can benefit from the adult caring and support that is at the heart of mentoring. Contact us for more information.
If you are not able to commit to a specific level of care at this time, but still have some time and want to help, you can volunteer for True Colors and help to organize the largest LGBT youth issues conference in the country or you could come in and help out in the office. Contact us for more information.