Resource Family Approval Toolkit

This toolkit is intended to provide caregivers access to easy-to-understand information, sample forms, and other resources to guide them through the approval process. The toolkit includes a narrative explaining RFA step by step, as well as an appendix full of supplemental tools and other materials referenced in the narrative. It is not meant to be comprehensive; each county in California may have its own supplemental forms and requirements, and all caregivers are encouraged to consult with their social worker and local advocacy organizations for additional guidance.

Los Angeles County Department of Children and Family Services’ Resource Family Approval (RFA) Division’s website for potential and current foster families.

Generations United, The Brookdale Foundation Group, AARP, ABA Center on Children and the Law, Casey Family Programs, ChildFocus, Child Trends, and the Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption have, as of May 2017, fully updated the GrandFacts: State Fact Sheets for Grandparents and Other Relatives Raising Children.


Child Welfare Financing Reform:The Limits of Flexibility and the Need for New Resources

This paper explores the significant flaws in the way the federal government currently funds our nation’s child welfare system and proposes reforms to strengthen and expand federal funding without undermining the existing entitlement. Read more

Are There Too Many Children in Foster Care? Policy Brief

This brief explores the drive the further reduce foster care caseloads and questions whether the priority should be caseload reduction or increasing supports and services to children regardless of whether a foster care entry is necessary. Read more

Developing a Robust Continuum to Support Foster Youth in Family-Based Settings Policy Brief

This brief details recent comprehensive reform efforts underway in California to reduce reliance on group care and bolster supports, services and funding to enable children to be raised in family settings. Read more

Understanding Eligibility for Federal Foster Care Benefits

Foster children receive federal foster care benefits if they meet the eligibility criter for the Aid to Familieis with Dependent Children program as it existed in 1996. This resources breaks down the antiquated federal eligibility rules. Read More

Child-Centered Continuum of Care Concept Paper 

The Continuum of Care Reform underway in California is an exciting opportunity to make necessary system reforms to ensure that our state’s foster children are fully supported in family settings. Relative caregivers are a critical part of California’s continuum of care that serves our state’s foster children. Read More

Focus Brief: California Foster Children Placed Into Poverty

When a child is removed from his or her home by the state and placed
into foster care, the state steps into the role of the child’s parent and is
obligated to protect and provide for that child and ensure the child’s
individualized needs are met. Despite this obligation, when the state
finds a relative to care for a child in foster care, that child is often
provided just a fraction of the support. Read More