What Steps Should I Take to be a Foster Care Recruiter?

The question, how do I become a foster care recruiter, continues to be a pressing issue in America. With over 450,000 foster care kids in the United States, the need for a stronger support system is rising and could provide the key for more successful adoptions. If you’re ready to make the leap towards becoming a foster care recruiter, take a look at the requirements below.

Earn an Accredited Degree

The first step in becoming a foster care recruiter is to obtain a bachelor’s degree from an accredited university, preferably in business or human services. Government agencies prefer recruiters who have an NASW-accredited social work degree, while private agencies will consider any applicant with a human services or business degree. Keep in mind that if you have a social work degree, you will have an advantage over other applicants; conversely, if you don’t, try making up for it by working for a nonprofit or volunteer for an organization that specializes in human services or foster care.

Work in Human Services

Human services is a broad term, but for potential foster care recruiters such as yourself, it means working with people in a variety of capacities. Most foster care recruiters work as a social worker prior to applying for this position, but teachers, nurses, lawyers, psychologists, and more are also great candidates for the job. The more experience you have working with people, the stronger your communication and analytical skills will become, allowing you to become a compassionate and professional recruiter.


While not strictly a requirement for becoming a foster care recruiter, you will find that volunteer work, whether through CASA or a non-governmental organization that works specifically with the foster care system, is preferred for most agencies currently looking for applicants. This is because the position focuses on in-person relationships and a knowledge of the foster care system, something that is usually found by working within the foster care system in some capacity, such as driving foster children to appointments, accompanying them on visits, and more. You can also volunteer in an after-school program or become a foster parent yourself; the latter is a great way to learn how the system works from a prospective foster parent’s point of view.

Become a State-Certifier of Foster Homes

Every state has its own requirements for foster care recruiters, but all require that you become a state-certifier of foster homes. This requires continuing education in the form of online courses, conferences, self-study courses, and a certification exam; once you complete the requirements, you will be required to stay up-to-date with the licensing requirements in the state, as re-certification happens every few years, depending on the state in which you hope to find a position.

Clean Driving and Criminal Record

Before you can begin work as a foster care recruiter, you will be interviewed by a government agency or a private foster care agency. For this, you will need to provide proof that you have a clean driving and criminal record; violations on either record will disqualify you, especially for government work purposes, from holding this position in any state in the country.

Every child needs a loving home, and by working within the foster care system, you can help deliver that to a child in need. The next time you think, how do I become a foster care recruiter, think instead, what can I do right now to make this job a reality?

Related Resource: Top 10 Best Online Social Work Degree Programs