A foster placement social worker, often referred to as a foster care social worker or case manager, is a professional who is educated in social services and works with children in foster care to assist them in finding adoptive parents. These professionals typically work for non-profit or government agencies.
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Most employers require at least a master's degree in social work, but may allow a bachelor's degree and three years of professional experience in a foster care setting. This occupation requires emotional maturity, attention to detail, and a non-judgemental personality to be able to successfully handle each child and parent's circumstances.
All states require licensing, certification or registration for these occupations. This can include a criminal background check as well as a state-administered exam. Most states require two years or 3,000 hours of supervised work to receive a license. Employment opportunities may increase for those who obtain child care worker certification such as Certified Child and Youth Care Professional from the Child & Youth Care Certification Board, Inc.
The duty of a foster care placement social worker is to ensure a child's well-being. These professionals provide care to children who require foster care, families who adopt them and children's birth parents. Caring for these individuals requires finding the best solution for all parties involved. This can include interviewing and assessing children's needs, the adoptive family's environment and the ability to regain or relinquish parental rights of the birth parents. Along with assessments, these professionals frequently visit and counsel all parties involved throughout the process to provide emotional support and guidance.
Foster care requires extensive documentation to legally administer foster care services. These professionals coordinate, complete and file all necessary paperwork for all parties involved. This can include assisting foster and birth parents preparing required documentation, and developing reports for the employer. Careful records are taken throughout the care of the children before, during and after placement.
Salaries for these occupations are standard in most geographies because employers are government or non-profit organisations. Indeed.com lists a national average salary of £28,600 per year in March 2010.
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