Become a Caregiver

Our caregivers provide a stable and accepting temporary home for children and teens that are separated from their families by the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS) while they work to improve the complex situations that led to the removal of their children through the court system.

Equally important is the duty to reach out to the youth’s family to provide support systems for them to get back up on their feet and maintain a consistent and healing relationship with their child/ren.

We welcome all backgrounds and family structures including single parents, empty nesters, LGBT+ families, and caregivers with disabilities. 

If you are interested in becoming a foster caregiver, contact:

Achieving Permanency through Kinship (AKIN)

We know parents need assistance navigating a complicated foster care system and accessing appropriate resources to support reunification with their children. With the AKIN model, our Caregiver Support Team created the new role of Parent Partners to help fill this gap.

Parent Partners are staff with lived experience within the child welfare system who understand parents’ experiences with the system. Our Parent Partners connect with parents to provide one-on-one mentorship and work collaboratively with their case manager and licensing specialist to support them throughout their case.

We provide services in the following counties:
Cook, DuPage, Lake, Will, Kane, Winnebago, Ogle, Boone, Stephenson, DeKalb, McHenry, St. Clair, Madison, Randolph, Bond, Clinton, and Jersey

For more information contact:

Ashley Akerman

Man crouching at the park with his arms outstretched, with a boy running towards him. Son running into father's arms.
A mother and daughter are visiting a hospital. The girl is being introduced to the doctor.

Caregiver Support

We pair caregivers with a support specialist who has lived experience caring for children in foster care and can help guide successful shared parenting with the youth’s parents.

Family Finding Support 

We reconnect youth in care with safe, healing, and stable family members and others in the youth’s life who can provide solid support network and temporary housing. For more information contact,

I could have let my grandkids go into the system, but in my heart and mind there was no doubt what the choice would be. My family is always first. It was at that point my grandchildren came to stay with me.  Jennifer, Relative Caregiver
Being a Parent Partner means providing the support that is lacking to parents and being able to change the system to help reunite and build strong families. We aim to help parents address their feelings towards the case such as fear, anger, and hurt so they can be their strongest self and be the best parent moving forward. Parent Partner, AKIN

Additional Caregiver Resources

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