It is the mission of the Foster and Kinship Care Education Program at College of the Redwoods to provide quality education and support opportunities to caregivers of children and youth in out-of-home care so that these providers may meet the educational, emotional, behavioral and developmental needs of children and youth in the foster care system.
From 1989 to 1998, the number of children in California's foster care system has grown by more than 50%-- from 68,000 to 105,000. The dramatic increase in the state's foster care population has been attributed to many factors-there are a greater number of children living in poverty, increasing numbers of parents who abuse alcohol and drugs, and increasing cases of child abuse and neglect. The FKCE program plays a vital role in providing licensed resource families (formerly called foster/kinship parents) with the training and education that will help them in meeting the multifaceted and often complex needs of the foster children in their care.
The FKCE program was established in 1984 following the passage of Senate Bill 2003, the Foster Children and Parent Training Fund. This act designated the California Community College Chancellor's Office as the agency to administer the program, which provides funding to community colleges for the provision of education and training to potential and existing resource parents.
The College of the Redwoods FKCE program works with the Humboldt and Del Norte County Department of Health & Human Services, Child Welfare Divisions to provide training and support for the resource families in the county. The FKCE program provides caregivers with continuing education training on topics such as understanding attachment and bonding, helping children who have experienced trauma, impacts of grief and loss, positive discipline methods, advocating for children in the education system, and working with child welfare. Download brochure here.
The Chancellor's Office receives funding for the FKCE program from two primary sources. State funding consists of community college Proposition 98 funds. These State funds are used as a match to pass through federal Title IV (e) funds, by way of an interagency agreement with the California Department of Social Services.
- All training sessions are FREE. Although our target audience is resource families (formerly called foster/kinship parents), our training classes are open to everyone in the community including social workers, other agency staff, family, and friends.
- Due to the topic and nature of some of the classes, children/teens might not be permitted to sit in the classes. Please check the schedule carefully and plan your childcare needs accordingly.
- In order to receive a certificate for full training hours, participants must attend the entire training. Credit for partial training hours is not offered.
In order to become a licensed foster parent, you must participate in the RFA (Resource Family Approval) Training. The Four Modules involve twelve hours of training which cover the following areas:
- Appreciation for special needs of foster and kinship children
- How to access health services and community resources
- How foster care fits into the Child Welfare System
- Techniques for building your foster children’s self-esteem
Already a licensed care provider? Sharpen your skills and enhance your knowledge by attending our in-service, therapeutic and special-topic training classes. We offer sessions in the following areas:
- How to effectively advocate for your foster child when dealing with schools and health-care agencies
- Learning about attachment and attachment disorders
- Working effectively with birth parents
- Understanding attention-deficient and hyperactive foster children
- Resolving family conflicts and anger
- Exploring healthy responses to grief and loss.
Participants register for classes through Zoom by answering participant questions and authorizing the release of information to Humboldt & Del Norte Departments of Social Services. The links to the classes are listed on the "Class Schedule" page. Each caregiver must register with a separate email address, but caregivers living in the same household can watch the training together on one devise.