Become an Amara Family

Become an Amara Family2018-09-19T11:10:57+00:00

Support for every step on an incredible journey.

Are you curious about becoming a foster family? The Amara Information Meeting (AIM) is a great opportunity to address all your questions and see if Amara is the right organization for you on your journey to fostering or adopting a child. You’ll learn about our services, hear from a family who fostered or adopted a child from foster care, and have the opportunity to have your questions answered.

Ready to take the first step? Contact Us to learn more!

Choosing to parent kids in foster care as an Amara family is the first step in a profound journey that will change their lives—and yours. As an Amara family, you’ll receive high-quality training, services, and ongoing support.

Because we are dedicated to making the best possible match for our kids and our families, we’ve developed a comprehensive process for becoming foster and adoptive parents.

My experience with my Amara social worker has been amazing. She’s been so intuitive about my feelings. The best advice she gave me is that when a child was placed in my home, my job was to make sure they have a safe and loving environment. It helps you keep things in perspective. – Leslie, an Amara parent

One of the reasons we ended up at Amara was because of their inclusivity. They welcome all family constellations. – Chandra, an Amara parent

Requirements to get started.

Amara believes in an inclusive definition of family. We welcome families into our program regardless of marital status, religious beliefs, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, home ownership, income, or education. In order to work with Amara you must:

  • Be 21 or older
  • Have at least 2 bedrooms in your home or apartment (including your bedroom)
  • Live within 2 hours driving distance from either our Seattle Office or Tacoma Office

For answers on other requirements, please review our Frequently Asked Questions.

Need more information? 

To learn more about getting started and address any specific questions you might have, please contact Trey Rabun at or at 206.260.1732.


The Process.

Step 1: Attend an Amara Information Meeting

The Amara Information Meeting (AIM) is a great opportunity to address all your questions and see if Amara is the right organization for you on your journey to fostering or adopting a child. You’ll learn about our services, hear from a family who fostered or adopted a child from foster care, and have the opportunity to have your questions answered. AIM is offered twice a month at our Rainier Valley office in Seattle, and once a month at our Tacoma office. Application packets will be available at the meeting. Click here to learn about upcoming Amara Information Meetings.

Step 2: Complete an application

To help us understand whether Amara is a good match for your family, our application is fairly extensive. If we are uncertain of our ability to help you meet your goals, we’ll invite you to a phone or in-person interview.

Step 3: Attend Caregiver Core Training (CCT)

Once your application is processed, you will be required to take the 24-hour, pre-licensing Caregiver Core Training (CCT). CCT is a competency-based training required for all licensed foster parents in Washington State. The 24-hour CCT is comprised of two distinct modules and a field experience. Amara and the Department of Social and Health Services (DSHS) offer CCT throughout the year at no cost to you.

Find out more about upcoming CCT training opportunities.

Step 4: Family preparation and home study

After you’ve completed CCT, you’ll begin the Family Preparation and Home Study phase of your process. This phase is designed to educate and prepare you for foster parenting and adoption, to certify your home for a foster home license, and to complete the home study document. This phase can be time and energy intensive because it is designed to ensure safety and stability for the vulnerable kids in our community.

This phase includes:

  • Interviews with your Foster Care Specialist
  • Preparatory training courses and reading
  • Completion of medical and financial reports, an autobiography, parenting plans, and home safety inspection

Step 5: Child and family matching and placement

Once you have an approved home study document and have been issued a foster home license, we begin the search for child and family match possibilities. During this search, you’ll work closely with Amara’s Child Placement Team and continue to receive support from your Foster Care Specialist. We’ll recommend additional learning opportunities, both through Amara trainings and recommended readings.

When we identify a potential match, we work closely with you and with the Washington State Children’s Administration to learn more about the child’s history, family members, current living situation, legal case, and unique needs. We also communicate about the strengths, desires, and commitment of your family. We believe that the best match for a child is a family that is ready to commit to them for as long as they need. You will never be forced to accept a placement you are uncomfortable with. The information available about a child often varies, but a placement decision will only be made with the full agreement of your family, Amara, and the child’s state social worker.

Following a placement decision, a child could move into your home within a few hours, days, or weeks depending on the need of the individual child. Amara will continue to support your throughout this transition.

Step 6: Support throughout placement

Once a child is placed in your home, we continue to offer guidance and support through your Foster Care Specialist.

This support includes:

  • A visit to your home each month to make sure the child(ren) and your family are doing well
  • Providing referrals for outside support when appropriate
  • Periodic evaluation of your home for licensing maintenance and compliance
  • Working with the Department of Social and Health Services (DSHS) to monitor and track the child’s legal case
  • Remaining available and responsive via email and phone to provide additional help and guidance as needed

Amara also offers ongoing training for families and a monthly support group.

Step 7: Reunification and Adoption Support

Reunification: When it is determined that a child will be reunified with their family, your Amara Foster Care Specialist will provide support and guidance for your whole family as you prepare for the transition. We’ll help you understand your role moving forward and help you determine the next steps for your family.

Adoption: When a case moves to adoption, you’ll hire your own attorney for the finalization hearing. Your Amara Foster Care Specialist will help your family by preparing a Post-Placement report as required by the court; updating all the necessary documents and providing needed materials to your attorney; and joining your family, if you wish, on the day of your adoption finalization to help celebrate this milestone.

Step 8: Post-Adoption Support

Adoption is not an event, it is a lifelong journey. Amara is excited to expand our work offering post-adoption support to Amara families who adopt a child from foster care. To learn more about how we are committing to our families, please visit our Post-Adoption Support Page.

Our Fees.

As a nonprofit organization, we rely largely on the philanthropic community to support our work. We are dedicated to providing your family with the highest level of care for a minimal fee. If you believe our fees are a barrier to your welcoming a child from foster care into your family, we can help.

If you have any questions, please feel free to Contact us.

Amara Fees at a Glance