CHOICES, Inc. operates the Foster Care Program with the philosophy that youth benefit from being in a least restrictive, safe, structured environment that stimulates and supports positive change and meets their physical, emotional and educational needs. CHOICES, Inc. uses a best practice approach that is informed by the most current research to guide behavioral change through a multi-disciplinary team. CHOICES uses a team approach to provide the best possible outcomes for youth.
The Foster Care Program serves youth from birth to 21 years of age, of all cultural, racial and ethnic backgrounds, within the developmental range from normal to severely disabled. Additionally, the youth are determined to be dependent, neglected, abused, delinquent or in need of supportive services because they are teen caregivers, with permanency goals ranging from reunification to adoption to emancipation directly from substitute care.
The youth may have emotional and developmental needs related to experiences of sexual abuse, physical abuse, neglect, or emotional disturbances such as conduct/behavioral disorders, chemical dependency issues, sexual offending behavior, delinquent behavior, or a mental, developmental or physical disability that may require the routine use of a medical device and daily ongoing care, and/or special medical needs.
The youth served by CHOICES, Inc. often prove to be resilient, determined, strong-spirited and independent thinkers. They demonstrate a great ability to adjust to difficult circumstances, to overcome loss, and to learn new behavioral techniques allowing them to be successful.
Referral & Placement Process
CHOICES, Inc. contracts with various child placing agencies, County Children Services and Juvenile Court Agencies within the Miami Valley area. Which include the following:
- Butler County
- Champaign County
- Clark County
- Clermont County
- Clinton County
- Darke County
- Fayette County
- Greene County
- Hamilton County
- Mercer County
- Miami County
- Montgomery County
- Preble County
- Shelby County
- Union County
- Warren County
When a youth is referred to CHOICES for Foster Care services we utilize a matching process that ensures consideration of the youth’s needs, the capabilities of the foster caregiver and family-centered neighborhood-based practices. A reasonable “fit” for the youth is crucial to a successful placement. CHOICES, Inc. will identify characteristics, behaviors and needs of the child in making placement decisions combined with the following matching variables which include but are not limited to:
- The foster parent’s strengths, specific skills, abilities and attitudes needed to work effectively with the particular child.
- The foster parent’s preferences of age, gender, ethnicity, race, culture and religion.
- The geographical location of the foster home and proximity to the child’s family and services that may already be in place.
- The availability and access to resources required to meet the child’s needs.
- Composition of the family including the other foster youth placed in the home.
Scope of Services
A CHOICES, Inc. Foster Care program staff person is present when a youth is placed in a foster home in order to make the transition as smooth as possible. The staff will visit with the youth and the foster caregiver again within 72 hours of placement and, at a minimum, three times per month after that.
We have found that consistent communication between everyone involved with the youth is paramount to a successful placement. The individuals involved with a youth are referred to as treatment team members and include the youth, biological family member(s)—as appropriate, placing agency worker, CHOICES worker, and may also include other individuals such as: mental health worker, therapist, CASA/GAL, teacher or other school personnel, probation/parole officer, MR/DD worker and rehabilitation worker.
While in a family setting, the multi-disciplinary treatment team develops an individualized Service Plan for each youth, which identifies goals and services that should be provided to help the youth achieve their treatment goals. This team approach creates a therapeutic environment in which many children can thrive and work through issues associated with abuse, neglect, loss and separation.
If deemed appropriate, CHOICES will make an internal referral to our Home Based Services for mental health services in the foster home. Our foster care staff will provide CPST services to the youth if prescribed through the Mental Health Assessment.