Foster Parents

There is an urman and woman forming an arch over 2 kidsgent need for foster parents to care for Rowan County children! Caring individuals are needed to provide temporary homes to children in foster care in Rowan County.

Informational Packet

Receive a free informational packet by calling our Children’s Services Division at 704-216-8440. Please give your name, mailing address, phone number and email.

What steps do I need to take to become a Foster Parent?


View a brief online orientation  for prospective North Carolina  foster parents.   All  prospective foster parents must view this orientation.  You will receive a training certificate  showing that you have viewed this orientation.   Print the certificate and bring it with you to the Prospective Foster Parent Informational Meeting. 


Watch “Foster Hope, Foster Love,  Foster Families.”  In this video, licensed  foster parents discuss their reasons for becoming foster parents and the challenges  and rewards of providing foster care.   Jimmy Wayne, a county music star who spent time in foster care in North Carolina, narrates  the video.   


North Carolina state law  requires that all foster homes be licensed to care for children in their care.  These licenses are issued by the N.C. Department of Health and Human Services,  Division of Social Services (Licensing Authority). These “supervising agencies” (DSS) help potential foster parents navigate  the licensing process and provide them with ongoing supervision and support  after they are licensed.

To be licensed  to provide foster care individuals must meet many requirements, some of these include  the following: 

  1. Foster parents must be at least 21 years old. There is no upper age  limit.  
  2. Families must have adequate income to financially support themselves  without relying on the foster care payment. The foster care payment is  strictly a reimbursement for expenses related to providing room, board, and  supervision to children in foster care.   
  3. Foster parents must be willing to participate in Shared Parenting, which  means working with the families of children placed in your home if your  supervising agency determines this is appropriate. 

Training Before Licensing

  1. All applicants must participate in and complete 30 hours of training  before they can be licensed. This training will be provided by the supervising  agency the applicant selects. The frequency and times for this training varies  from agency to agency.
  2. Prospective therapeutic foster parent applicants must complete an  additional 10 hours of training before they can be licensed. Most therapeutic  foster care agencies use a course called Becoming a Therapeutic Foster  Parent.  

Physical Home Requirements

  1. The applicant’s home must pass a fire inspection. Your supervising  agency will provide information about how to attain a fire inspection in your  community. 
  2. The applicant’s home must pass an environmental and health regulations  check; this check will be conducted by your supervising agency.  
  3. The foster home must have a working telephone. 
  4. The foster home must provide each child with their own personal bed.

Health Requirements

  1. Applicants and household members must meet minimum physical and mental  health requirements as indicated by a physical examination completed by a  licensed medical provider.  
  2. All family members 18 years old and up must have a TB skin test.  Children in the family are tested for TB only when an adult in the family tests  positive for TB.    

Background Checks

  1. NC law requires a criminal history check be conducted on all foster  parent applicants and all adult members (18 years old and up) who reside in the  home. Each adult must meet licensing requirements according to NC General  Statue 131D. Fingerprints are used to check State Bureau of Investigation (SBI)  and Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) records to determine whether  individuals meet these requirements.  
  2. Applications to provide foster care will be denied if applicants or  household members are registered on the NC Sex Offender and Public Protection  Registry or the Health Care Personnel Registry.  
  3. Records from local courts and the NC Department of Corrections must be  checked for all adult household members.         

Licensing Process

  1. With the assistance of DSS, all foster parent  applicants must complete a licensing application and a mutual home assessment  (home study).

NC Foster Home Licensure Requirements