Monday, October 19, 2009

First Ask Dave Question

Today I am starting the Ask Dave thread. Each week I will take one of the questions sent to me, either by e-mail or ShoutBox, and post an answer in the blog. All these answers will be linked together in a topic thread called Ask Dave!  You can view all these answers by selecting the Ask Dave! thread in the listing in the column to the right.

This first question was sent to me last week. In a post I mentioned that I always take my foster kids on vacation with me, and that I have heard that this is unusual. In response a reader asked, “How would you take a vacation without the kids? Is there some place you could drop them off?”

The answer is that many foster parents utilize respite care providers when they go on vacation. Respite care providers are foster homes that volunteer to temporarily watch after foster kids when their regular foster parents need a break. I have never used this service myself, and so do not know how reimbursement works. For example, is respite care paid for by the regular foster home, or does the placement agency (like the county) deduct some amount from the reimbursement normally sent to the regular home and give it to the respite home? (I will ask around about this.)

My preference is to take the kids on vacation with me, just as I would my biological children. Among other things, I think it makes them feel more like part of the family, and spares them another uprooting experience.