Frequently Asked Questions

What does Therapeutic Foster Care mean?

Therapeutic Foster Care is an intensive, treatment-based approach to caring for children in foster care to better meet their physical and emotional needs. Youth in therapeutic foster care meet regularly with a therapist and a case manager who assist and monitor the young person’s progress. Therapeutic foster parents also receive continual training and 24/7 professional support.

Children in therapeutic foster care are assigned a level. There are five different levels of care, with Level One meaning the child or youth has very few issues or behaviors. The levels increase according to the severity of the behaviors, with Level Five being the highest. The level of care determines many things, including amount of therapy required, amount of supervision, and the financial support foster parents receive for their care of the child in their home.

Who can become a Uspiritus foster parent?

Almost anyone who has a desire to help children can become a foster parent. All foster parents must be at least 21 years old and pass background checks, a health screening and provide verification of income.

Where are Uspiritus foster children from?

Children placed in Uspiritus foster homes come from all over Kentucky. These children have been removed from their homes by the Cabinet of Health and Family Services for a variety of reasons.

Do the children still have contact with their biological families?

The children’s level of contact with their biological families varies greatly from case to case. In some cases, parental rights may already be terminated, resulting in no contact. In other cases, there may be phone calls and supervised visits, or children may spend weekends at home with their families unsupervised.

It is important to understand that, when the child’s goal is to be reunified with their biological parents, foster parents need to be open to having some contact with the birth families. In general, it is best for the child if the foster parents and birth parents can establish a positive relationship.

Our goal is for foster youth to be treated as much like one of your own children as possible. However, there are some limitations on what foster youth can do. Uspiritus must get permission from the state (the legal custodian of foster youth) before they are allowed to engage in certain activities or attend certain events. Also, typically foster youth will not be allowed to drive an automobile until they are 18 years old.

What if I need a break?

Uspiritus offers respite care for all of our families and children. Respite is used when a foster family simply needs to take a break for a few days or if the foster family needs to be away for other reasons. Simply let your Uspiritus worker know in advance that you need personal time, and they will schedule respite for you.

I have an interest in fostering a child of a certain age. Is this program right for me?

Typically, Uspiritus does not receive placement of infants and toddlers. Although we serve children and youth of all ages, the greatest need is for foster parents willing to work with children who are 12 years old and above.

Do I receive support from Uspiritus?

Yes! We are with you every step of the way, providing:

  • Emergency on-call services 24/7, including on-site visits to your home, no matter the hour, if necessary
  • Financial support
  • Free liability insurance
  • Specialized, continual training
  • Monthly foster parent support group meetings
  • A quality team of professionals eager to assist you

Do I have input regarding the placement?

Absolutely. Uspiritus respects your current family situation and wants to place a child in your home who will be a good fit. During the training process, you will fill out a form that helps us identify children who might be a good match for you. As each child comes available for placement, staff members will determine appropriate homes for the child. Uspiritus will then contact prospective foster parents to discuss the child. At that point you can decide whether to proceed. You can decline placement at any time.

Can my foster children do the same things my own children do?

Our goal is for foster youth to be treated as much like one of your own children as possible. However, there are some limitations on what foster youth can do. Uspiritus must get permission from the state (the legal custodian of foster youth) before they are allowed to engage in certain activities or attend certain events. Also, typically foster youth will not be allowed to drive an automobile until they are 18 years old.

Will the children need their own bedrooms?

No. Same sex children are allowed to share a room with another but are not allowed to share a bedroom with a foster parent. However, they must have their own bed.

Am I responsible for paying for all of the child’s needs?

No. Each child in foster care has full medical care provided by a medical card. You also receive a tax-free payment each month to reimburse you for your time and expenses. Uspiritus also gives its foster parents additional financial support each month to buy clothes for foster children. We also reimburse for mileage to therapy appointments  and other foster child-related activities and appointments.

When are the foster parent training classes?

Foster parent training classes are scheduled at your convenience. Unlike many agencies that offer large, classroom-style trainings, Uspiritus provides individual classes in your home when your schedule allows. We have found these in home trainings are convenient and help our foster parents and staff become acquainted and comfortable with each other in their working relationships.


“I was a resident in Haney Cottage at Bellewood. You guys helped me get back to my bio mom, and because of that I have four REAL friends now. I wish I could see the Haney Cottage staff one more time, because I would really like to thank them for helping me get better.”

– C., former resident

For more than 160 years, Bellewood Home for Children and Brooklawn Child & Family Services have worked separately to nurture thousands of Kentucky’s most vulnerable children.

Uspiritus and Centerstone Kentucky
Sign Letter of Intent to Merge

Learn More