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Resource Family Approval (RFA)

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 A Child in Our Community Needs You

Children in the foster care system need caring families to provide safety and stability. Resource Parents, formerly known as Foster Parents, provide this with the ultimate goal of reunifying children with their birth parents.

As a Resource Parent, you can give a child the love and security he/she needs. You can play a significant role in helping families by providing a temporary foster care home or, if reunification with birth parents is not possible, provide a long-term home through Adoption or Legal Guardianship.

As a Resource Parent, you will partner with Social Workers, the local court system, and other community agencies to ensure children in foster care are safe, healthy, and able to reach their full potential. You can become the support that makes a difference in foster children’s lives. Children in your community need your support. We thank you for caring about kids in your community.


Become a Resource Parent today!

If you are interested in becoming a Resource Parent, please attend a Resource Family Approval (RFA) Orientation. At the Orientation, you will be provided with an RFA application, other RFA forms, and an Heart Made of Handprintsinvitation to attend the RFA Pre-Service training. Please call (559) 675-5807 or email for more information.

**Due to the Coronavirus (COVID-19), all RFA Orientations and Pre-Service trainings have been put on hold until further notice. For more information, please call (559) 675-5807 or email

The Madera County Department of Social Services RFA Team would be more than happy to present the need for Resources Families to your organization or event. Please call (559) 675-5807 or email for more information.


What is the Role of a Resource Parent?

Resource Parents provide safe, stable, and caring homes for children at risk of abuse or neglect. Resource Parents become part of a team which support children and implement plans made for an individual child. Although the initial goal is to reunify children with birth parents, if the child cannot reunify, Resource Parents may be eligible to adopt or become Legal Guardians to the child.

Resource Parents’ duties include transporting children to visits with family members, coordinating medical appointments, ensuring school attendance and academic success, and addressing the specific needs of the child. This involves working with Social Workers, birth parents, the court, and other agencies.


Who Can Become a Resource Parent?

Resource Parents are:

• All races and ethnicities

• Single, married, divorced, living together

• Retired or working

• Homeowner or renter

• House or apartment

• Blended families

• LGBTQ families or individuals


Steps to Becoming a Resource Parent

Before placing a child in your home, federal and state law require that you become an approved Resource Parent. Becoming a Resource Parent takes time and determination. The requirements are intended to ensure Resource Parents are equipped to meet the challenges of caring for children in the foster care system. These are the steps:

1. Attend an RFA orientation meeting

2. Complete application forms

3. Fingerprint all persons in the household age 18 and over

4. Pass a thorough background check (all adults and frequent visitors 18 and older)

5. Complete 12 hours of RFA Pre-Service Training

6. Participate in a safety home inspection

7. Complete First Aid and CPR certification

8. Provide a Health Report including a TB test result

9. Submit DMV Report

10. Submit income and expense verification

11. Complete the RFA family evaluation with a Social Worker

12. Submit two character references



The RFA Team is pleased to announce the implementation if the Binti platform to improve services to our Resource Families. Binti is accessible through most electronic devices, including smartphones, PCs, and tablets. Binti allows individuals in our community to:

  • Complete an RFA application
  • Upload documents such as CPR certificates, TB test, etc.
  • Receive emails and text from staff for placement of foster children

New applicants are offered access to Binti at RFA orientation. Current resource parents can call (559) 675-5807 or email



RFA Pre-Service Training

Resource Parents Receive on-going support from Department of Social Services and partner staff

Annual Recertification Requirements and Updates

Training Sites

RFA Brochure

RFA Written Directives

California Welfare and Institutions Code


Quarterly Resource Family Newsletters