When children and youth live with and are cared for by members of their family, kin, a family friend or someone in their community, this is referred to as a kinship arrangement.

Kinship arrangements support children and youth to maintain connection to their family and heritage, help them remain in their community, support their identity, and help them maintain their ethnicity, culture, and family traditions.

Kinship in Care is when a child or youth has come into the care of a Children’s Aid Society and is living in a kinship arrangement.

Once potential caregivers have been found, they are assessed to understand their ability to meet the needs of a child, as if they were the parents in the interim and long term if needed. The goal is to reconnect the child with their parents as quickly as possible, but the hope is that if the child cannot return to their biological parents, the kinship caregiver/family will be a permanent home for the child.

Kinship in Care caregivers must meet the same requirements as Resource caregivers and Adoption applicants, which includes:
  • Home visits by a Children’s Aid Society worker.
  • Structured Analysis Family Evaluation (SAFE): A standardized assessment model for those who are interested in becoming a Resource caregiver. A SAFE home study may only be completed by a Children’s Aid Society staff or a Ministry-approved practitioner. A SAFE home study can take 4–6 months to complete and is generally valid for up to 2 years. A SAFE home study includes:
    • An Application,
    • A Home Safety Checklist and Questionnaires,
    • Medical Evaluations including Vaccination Status,
    • Criminal Record Check and Vulnerable Sector Check,
    • Children’s Aid Provincial and Local Database Check;
    • Personal Reference Checks.
  • Parent Resources for Information, Development, and Education (PRIDE): The Children’s Aid Society of Oxford County also provides a nine-session (27 hour) P.R.I.D.E. Pre-Service Training program (Parent Resources for Information, Development and Education) used to prepare and educate families who are interested in fostering.
  • Additional Resource caregiver training such as First Aid with infant and child CPR, First Nation, Inuit and/or Metis Cultural Competency training, and Trauma Informed Care training are also required.