People with Disabilities
Become a family care provider
Is becoming a Family Care Provider right for me?
The questionnaire below will help you determine if becoming a Family Care Provider is the best choice for you now. We also love talking to people directly about being a Family Care Provider, so please contact us if you would like to talk more about it and have other questions.
Do I have the time to become a Family Care Provider?
You will be opening your heart and house to a person who will need your support 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and, in most cases, 365 days a year. When you agree to become a Family Care Provider, you are promising to enhance and enrich this person’s life through love, support, dedication, and community immersion and this involves an investment of your time. People in this service have meetings, appointments, and activities that will require you to transport and accompany them. It is important to match a person with similar lifestyle preferences and needs to that of your family.
Is my family ready?
Just as the children and other family members in your life need a lot of attention, so will the person you bring into your home. This decision will also affect everyone in your home, so be sure that everyone is on board with adding another member and that your family is aware of the changes that might occur. You will need to have at least one assistant to support you in this job in the event that you need to be away or are sick. Your assistant will need to participate in all the paperwork and training that you, as the Family Care Provider, will complete.
Am I old enough and do I have the proper ID?
Family Care Providers must be at least 21 years of age and have a valid driver license with a good driving record. The applicant and any other adult over the age of 18 living in the home must also have a criminal background check and child and adult protective services registry search. All people living in the house must have a TB screening that shows they are free of tuberculosis.
Is my house ready?
The people we serve must have their own room that is at least 80 square feet with a window and/or air conditioning, have access to a bathroom that is not accessed by going through another bedroom, have a clean, uncluttered environment, and have access to all public areas of the house. Do you have one bathroom for every four people in the house? Do you have fewer than seven people living in your house or staying over regularly?
Do I have adequate finances to become a Family Care Provider?
To become a Family Care Provider, you must show that you have enough money to support your household for three months. This means you need to have enough in savings, checking or credit to cover all of your living expenses and bills for three months. Proof of these resources will be collected from you initially and then annually. These resources have to be owned/possessed by the person being licensed to be the Family Care provider — they cannot be in anyone else’s name.
What training is required to be a Family Care Provider?
The trainings required include CPI, CPR/First Aid, medication administration, Human Rights, Direct Support Professional certification, and documentation. You will be offered these trainings through enCircle. You may be required to travel to these trainings, which are offered at various locations. There will be annual recertification.
Do I have the background and credentials to become a Family Care Provider?
At a minimum, applicants need to have at least six months direct experience working with people with intellectual or developmental disabilities or a Bachelor’s Degree in Psychology, Social Work, Special Education or related field. We look for families who have worked with or volunteered with organizations that support people with disabilities. We require a general knowledge of what disabilities are and how to properly support and care for people who have disabilities. We require a resume and three professional references.
What professional, computer or writing skills are needed?
You will be representing enCircle in your work as a Family Care Provider. You will be required to interact with other provider agencies and community resource agencies on behalf of the person in this service. You must be reliable and have good organizational skills to be successful as a Family Care Provider. There are daily writing requirements to describe the supports that the person received and to track growth and learning. You will be given training on how to carry out Individual Service Plan outcomes and the correct way to document the person’s progress. Computer skills and email communication are required for coordinating information on behalf of the person in your care.
What support will I have to do my job as a Family Care Provider?
You will be assigned an enCircle manager who will support you in your role of FCP. Your manager will make monthly visits to your home to check on the environment and the well-being of the person you are supporting, and to ensure that the required daily documentation is up to date. The manager will also provide resource information and guidance when issues arise. Each person receiving services also has a support coordinator from the Community Services Board or Behavioral Health Agency who will have at least quarterly face-to-face meetings with the person to ensure their well-being and satisfaction with the services they are receiving.
How are people matched to Family Care Homes?
It is our hope that each Family Care Provider placement will be long-term. We closely examine the needs of the FCP and the needs of the person seeking services. There will be meetings between you and the person, as well as trial visits to ensure that both the FCP and the person needing the service are a good match. Even with this time and effort to ensure a good match, there are circumstances that may arise that would require the person to leave the FCP’s home. When this occurs, every effort is then made to find an alternative placement as quickly as possible. This can take days or weeks. You must be aware of this and be prepared to work with your manager and the person’s support coordinator to ensure that the person makes a smooth transition from your home to another living situation.
Can I become a provider for my family member with a developmental disability?
In areas that lack appropriate services for your family member, you might be able to become a provider for him/her. If services are not available in your area, or if you’ve tried them and found them to be inadequate, family members — such as parents or siblings — can become providers at the discretion of your support coordinator. This can also happen a physician feels that due to medical reasons, family members may be the best option. Families who are providers must meet the same criteria as any other provider and receive the same supports from enCircle.
To find out more about what is involved in becoming a Family Care Home and the financial support provided, please call 1.800.359.3834 or email info@enCircleAll.org. We welcome your calls and questions.