Foster A Child in Northern California

Are you are interested in becoming an approved Resource Parent (formerly known as foster parent) so you can foster or adopt a youth please download our free ebook to learn more about how to bring a child in foster care into your life.

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This guide will explain all of the requirements and steps you’ll need to go through before you can care for children in foster care, highlighting the total application process including the background check and home study procedures. This is for all resource families, whether you’re interested in fostering or adopting from foster care.

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What AFS Looks for in Resource Families

AFS seeks individuals and families who can offer warmth and understanding to foster children by becoming resource parents. AFS resource parents should demonstrate patience, guidance, motivation, tolerance, understanding, flexibility and commitment. Resource parents through AFS have excellent 24/7 support, compensation, training and agency accountability.

AFS operates a number of foster care services designed that are solution-focused, strength-based, needs-driven, community-centered and culturally competent.

  • Therapeutic Foster Care
  • Intensive Services Foster Care
  • Family Alternatives for Children with Developmental Disabilities
  • San Francisco Emergency Placement

Initial AFS Resource Family Qualifications

An AFS approved resource parent or family must:

  • reside in the following Northern California counties: Alameda, Butte, Contra Costa, El Dorado, Kern, Lake, Marin, Napa, Placer, Sacramento, San Francisco, San Joaquin, San Mateo, Santa Clara, Solano, Sonoma, Stanislaus, Sutter, Yolo and Yuba
  • have a stable source of income sufficient to meet your family’s needs
  • provide approved adult supervision for a foster child whenever they are in your home
  • have a bedroom for a foster youth (individual or shared with a child of same gender and similar in age)
  • Add the "Review Foster Parent Information Button" from the bottom of the page to this section. Change the button to say "Review Resource Parent FAQs" and now you can delete the line For more foster parent information, please be sure to review our FAQs page.

Begin Application Process 

Learn About Becoming an AFS Resource or Adoptive Parent

Thank you for considering AFS to assist you in fostering or adopting a youth! We're here to answer your questions and support you through the process of becoming a resource family/foster parent.

(800) 300-1022
Inquire online by clicking here
Si necesita hablar con alguien en español: (800) 300-1022


  • CA Department of Social Services Resource Family Approval Written Directives - click here
  • CA Foster Youth Rights Handbook - click here

Foster Parent Referral Program

If you are an AFS Foster Parent or staff member and know someone interested in becoming a foster parent, the AFS Foster Parent Referral Program allows you to earn money while helping foster children and youth work towards a permanent solution.