Introducing the Placement Coordination team, welcoming youth into your home

essentials foster care and adoption

Introducing the Placement Coordination Team

As shared with foster parents on Wednesday, December 28, 2022:

In 2023, non-relative foster parents will hear from the Placement Coordination Team with potential placements, rather than from their licensor. This change will streamline the placement process and help us make the best match between children’s needs and your skills and capacities.

Learn more about the team and their work in this Q&A.

How does the Placement Coordination Team make the best match possible between children and foster providers?

First, we encourage foster parents to complete the Provider Profile forms so we can learn more about you. This will provide a quick “get to know you” about your home environment. Our team also has strong rapport with foster care licensors.

We look at types of experience for foster providers and how that matches up with children’s needs and typical developmental behavior.  

Opportunities to keep siblings together can be important. We also consider things like geographic location and school district so that transportation is a simple transition.

In a placement situation, what does strong collaboration and partnership look like?

We value flexibility as a department and with foster providers. Understand that cases are in flux and arrangements likely need to be flexible. Expect the unknown and stay adaptable.

Communication is another quality of strong collaboration and partnership:

  • Openness to communication and connection with relatives, parents, and families. We are serving the entire family, not just the child.
  • Routine communication about case updates and other changes.
  • Staying in touch about supports to maintain the placement.

Lastly, we can all practice trauma-informed patience.

Why are you proud to be part of the Placement Coordination Team?

We are streamlining the placement process for efficiency, and to support families and foster providers. It’s a child-centered approach. Placing workers are connected to the family, Foster Care Licensing supports providers, and the Placement Coordination Team focuses on the youth’s needs and advocates for the best placement outcomes.

These changes show momentum to incorporate more trauma-informed practices in out-of-home placement.

Placement Coordination Team members

Placement Coordination Team members. Back row, left to right: Ryan Zollman, Maddie Alcon, Gao Vang, Barbara Paintner. Front row, left to right: Angela Baker, Dave Skroch (supervisor)

Note: The Placement Coordination Team is different than the Placement Support Team, which launched in January 2022 to support children in initial placements. These two teams work together and with licensors, placing workers, foster providers, families, and other workers.

As you know, all adults responsible for children’s well-being must function as a team – especially for children in foster care.

Welcoming youth to your home

Guidance icon

Whether a child or teen is moving into a home with a trusted relative or kin or moving into a foster home with people they haven’t met before, the experience can be emotionally difficult and overwhelming.

A new tip sheet for foster parents shares useful ideas to help you create a welcoming physical environment, start conversations to set the stage for a positive relationship, and help children and youth feel safe and have a sense of control.

Find the “Welcoming A Child/Youth Into Your Home” tip sheet under Resources at

Share your own tips and win a $10 gift card

We would love to hear from our foster parents on this topic!

For those of you who are caring for a child you are related to or knew well before they came to live with you, what is something you did to help ease their transition into your home?

For those of you who are non-relative providers who welcome children you haven’t previously known into your home, what strategy or tips do you have to share with other foster parents? 

Share your wisdom at the link below. We will randomly select two entries to win a $10 gift card!

Welcoming Youth to Your Home entry form must be submitted by Tuesday, January 24, 2023

National Adoption Day was a success!

We celebrated National Adoption Day on Saturday, November 19, with 20 children and youth who exited foster care to permanency through adoption. Thirteen families finalized adoptions that day – all of them relatives or kin.

At the event, families enjoyed professional family portraits, activities, snacks, and gifts.

Although there is much to celebrate, we cannot forget the 99 children and youth in foster care who still need adoptive families.

For more information about Hennepin County’s waiting children, visit

Hearts with names of Hennepin County waiting kids

Hearts with names of Hennepin County waiting children on display at National Adoption Day event

Help us find a family for Fernando

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. 


Fernando is smart, active, friendly, and respectful. He enjoys spending time with friends, eating out, and playing baseball, football, and basketball.  Fernando would benefit from a family who can teach him independent living skills as he gets older. He is comfortable with both single and two parent families as well as having other children and pets in the home. Fernando has Native American heritage and will need ongoing access to Tribal ceremonies, celebrations, powwows, and activities. Following adoption, Fernando will need to maintain contact with his siblings. ICWA applies; however, all families are being considered at this time.

View Fernando’s profile and Reel Hope video on our website.

What is Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV)

RSV-Respiratory Syncytial Virus is a common virus that affects the lungs and breathing passages. The surge of cases in Minnesota and across the country has taken families and health care workers by surprise. The number of new cases is up 300% compared to a typical season in some places.

RSV can be very dangerous for premature infants, babies under 6 months old, children under 2 years old with heart or lung disease, and children with weakened immune systems.

Call your child’s doctor if they have trouble breathing, are not drinking enough fluids or their symptoms get worse.

There is no vaccine for RSV. The best way to prevent it is to wash your hands often and keep them away from your face.

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It can be difficult to find a doctor in your child/youth’s Health Plan network. It’s important you are both comfortable with the clinic and the provider. Dentists can be really hard to find.

The Child and Teen Checkups (C&TC) staff are experienced in finding medical and dental clinics. We can help set up transportation and interpreters, when needed.

Let us help you with their health care. We can help you find a doctor you are comfortable talking to at a clinic in their Health Plan network. We are experts in finding dentists who will accept your foster child/youth’s health insurance.


Call or email us today:

Self-test: receive training credit

To receive an hour of training credit, read this Essentials Newsletter and complete the quiz below.


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. Can RSV be dangerous?
  2. How many children were adopted on National Adoption Day?
  3. How often should children 6 months to 24 months be seen by a physician?__________________________________________________________
  4. Non-relative foster parents will hear from who regarding potential placements?
  5. Many waiting children are ___________________________________
  6. What date was National Adoption Day?
  7. What is RSV?
  8. Is the Placement Coordination Team the same as the Placement Support Team?
  9. Where can you find more information regarding children waiting to be adopted?
  10. Where is the tip sheet located for "Welcoming A Child/Youth Into Your Home?"



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