Hennepin County Essentials

essentials foster care and adoption

April, May, June 2022

May is National Foster Care Month



Recognizing National Foster Care Month 

Each May, we recognize our foster providers in the role they play to enhance the lives of the children in foster care. We thank you for your dedication in providing the children in your care with stability, love, and hope.

Thank you for your commitment!


Child and Teen Checkups (C&TC): Eat a rainbow



Eat A Rainbow Every Day!

To be healthy, kids need to eat different, colorful fruits and vegetables every day. By using a rainbow as a guide, you can be sure that your children/youth are getting the vitamins and minerals they need to be healthy.

No one fruit or vegetable provides all the nutrients that kids need. By breaking food down into color groups of red, orange, yellow, green and purples you can make eating fruits and vegetables fun and easy for kids! Even at a very young age, kids can easily understand the idea of eating a rainbow.


Learn more about the chart pictured above: Whole Kids Foundation- Eat a Rainbow

Need help with finding a clinic or dentist for your child/youth, or more information regarding child and teen checkups? We’re here to help.

Call: 612-348-5131

Email: checkups@hennepin.us

~Article from Hennepin County Child and Teen Checkups (C&TC)

Licensor's Corner: Caseworker vists, support groups


Caseworker Visits

When children are in out of home placement, their social worker must meet with them face-to-face each month. Most of those visits occur in the foster home, though some may happen at school or in the community. Due to COVID, some of those visits have been virtual as well.

These monthly visits are an opportunity for foster parents to ask questions and to share information. Some foster parents find it helpful to keep a list of items they will want to discuss during the visit. Take time to share details about how the children are doing and to discuss what additional support you and the children may need.

For the child’s social worker, this visit is an opportunity to get to know you, to better understand a child’s needs, to assess the child’s safety and well-being, and to build a trusting relationship with the child. The way in which social workers conduct visits depends on the age and developmental stage of the child.

Workers are required to meet with each child age 4 or older, separate from their foster parent. This practice promotes child safety and well-being, keeps the child at the center of the work, and builds trust between worker and child. Children need to have an opportunity to share information and ask questions that may be difficult if their foster parent is present. Making this a standard practice at each visit is both required and builds consistent expectations for children when they are in placement. They know what they can expect during a visit, and they know that they will always have time for a private conversation with the social worker without having to ask for it.


Support Groups Available for Foster Parents

Did you know that Minnesota has a wealth of support options available to foster parents at no cost? Support groups can be particularly helpful. Spending time with other foster parents to share challenges and successes can help foster parents to feel less anxious or isolated, to stay motivated, and to feel empowered

Hennepin County has a support group specifically for Concurrent Families on the second Monday of each month. (Concurrent Families is a program for children  when termination of parental rights appears likely and at the time of placement a relative or kin home is not available as a permanency option.) For more information about this support group, talk with your licensor.

The North American Council on Adoptable Children (NACAC) facilitates a number of different support groups. Each support group is facilitated by experienced foster or adoptive parents. Currently, most support groups are held virtually. NACAC has general groups for foster parents, groups for relative and kin providers, groups for parents who are in need of support on school-related issues, support groups for foster and adoptive fathers – and more.

NACAC support groups calendar: mnasncalendar@gmail.com (google.com)

NACAC also hosts multiple private Facebook support groups where foster parents and adoptive parents can share their successes and support one another. Find information about these and other support options: Support for Minnesota Adoptive, Foster, Kinship Families - The North American Council on Adoptable Children (nacac.org)

Additional information about training and support for foster parents: www.mnadopt.org


Recruitment Corner: Help us find a family for Sean


As foster parents, you know that most children in foster care return home to their families. Some are adopted by relatives or by their foster parents.

When these options aren’t possible, kids still need loving, supportive adoptive families. Many waiting children in Hennepin County are school-age or teens, or part of a sibling group. Help us spread the word and find permanent families for these youth. We are in need of loving families, like yours, that are willing to be a mentor, respite provider, foster family, or possibly an adoptive placement for these youth. 

Please help us find a family for Sean. You may visit Children Waiting for Adoption to learn more information or share his details with someone who may be interested.


Sean is 15 years old and a charismatic, outgoing, and active teen who describes himself as a talkative guy that isn't shy. He likes remote control helicopters and cars, Legos, and Star Wars. Sean enjoys playing video games, watching popular shows, hiking, and listening to music. He also enjoys being active and spending time outdoors, biking, swimming, jumping on the trampoline and running. Sean's favorite class is science. Some of his favorite foods include cheese roll-ups, pizza, pizza rolls, slushies, peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and plain rice with butter. Sean likes cats and dogs and would enjoy having a pet. 

Sean is open to living anywhere in Minnesota and to having siblings, but would prefer a smaller family. He would do best in a two-parent family who could provide him with one-on-one care and attention. 


For more information on Sean or other Waiting Children at Hennepin County, please contact us at Fosteradopt@Hennepin.us.





Foster parent training website

Visit the Hennepin County foster parent website for the most up-to-date training opportunities. Whether it’s your first year of being a foster provider or you're a veteran who has been here for years, there is a breakdown of what training is required depending on your stage of licensure on our website. Don’t delay training until the end of the year! Check it out today. Hennepin.us/fosterparents


Spring Summit

MN ADOPT will be holding a virtual Spring Summit for foster and adoptive parents in April. Registration is free! Workshops for parents will be on Wednesday, April 13 and on Thursday, April 21. For more information and to register, visit MN ADOPT’s website: Spring Summit for Parents and Professionals - MN Adopt

Self-test: receive training credit


To complete the quiz below and receive an hour of training review this Essentials Newsletter. 

If two foster parents want to take the test and each receive an hour of training, please attach an additional answer sheet.


Once you have completed the test, email it to your licensing worker.



Licensing Worker:___________________________________


If you do not use email, please mail the completed quiz to your licensing worker at:

Hennepin County-HSPHD

Foster Care Licensing

Attn: _________________

300 South Six Street, Mail Code ______

Minneapolis, MN 55487


  1. What month is National Foster Care Month?
    1. March
    2. May
    3. January
    4. July
  2. How frequently are child protection workers required to have visits with foster children?
    1. Weekly
    2. Monthly
    3. Every 3 months
    4. Every 6 months
  3. It is standard practice for child protection workers to meet with foster children over age 4 privately, away from foster parents.
    1. True
    2. False
  4. Concurrent Families is a program for what population of foster children?
    1. Relative placements and their providers
    2. Post-adopted children
    3. Children who are likely to become available for adoption where a relative/kin is not available for permanency
    4. Children with a history of sexual abuse
  5. What day does the Concurrent Families Support Group meet?
    1. First Tuesday of the month
    2. Third Thursday of the month
    3. Second Saturday of the month
    4. Second Monday of the month
  6. What does NACAC stand for?
    1. North American Child Abuse Coalition
    2. North American Council on Adoptable Children
    3. North American Center for Academic Coaching
  7. Most children in foster care are…?
    1. Adopted
    2. Stay in foster care until age 18
    3. Reunified with their families
  8. According to the Hennepin.us/fosterparents website, how many hours of applicable foster care training are needed every year?
    1. 6
    2. 10
    3. 12
    4. 18
  9. According to the Hennepin.us/fosterparents website, what is the minimum number of training hours you must In-Person?
    1. 3
    2. 5
    3. 6
    4. 9
  10. Kids can get all the nutrients they need by eating the same fruit or vegetable everyday.
    1. True
    2. False






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