Are you looking to do something truly selfless to help someone else? Have you ever thought about becoming a foster parent? There are 88 North Dakota children in the PATH foster care system who need homes, and you have the opportunity to help.

Gabrielle, a social worker for PATH, says they serve children ages zero-to-21 in the foster care system. PATH works with children who've been diagnosed with mental health issues. According to Gabrielle, it is common for children in foster care to suffer mentally because of traumas they've experienced. These children need support, and you as a foster parent will get support from PATH as well.

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If you want to open your home to a child from PATH, you can trust that you'll have the tools for success in your home. The process to becoming a PATH foster parent takes six-to-eight weeks. You must be a resident of North Dakota, be older than 21, be financially stable, have a driver's license and vehicle, and be able to pass a criminal and child abuse/neglect background check. You also must have a room in your house for a child, be committed to training, and have everyone in your household on-board with fostering a child.

Once you've gone through training and are a licensed foster parent, your PATH case worker will work with you to find the right child for your family. If there's a reason a child is not the right fit for your family, there are other options for helping. You could provide short-term relief to full-time foster families, or Regular Foster Care.

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If you're worried about your ability to foster, you don't have to be in a "traditional" family living situation to do it. Gabrielle says you could live in an apartment or trailer home, you can be single, you can be a member of the LGBTQ+ community, you can have a roommate, etc. It's best to just reach out for information to find out if you can help a child in need.

If you're interested in fostering a PATH child and/or want more information, you can check out the Nexus Family Healing website. You can also call Gabrielle at (701) 850-7068.

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