Position Profile

Job Title:  Foster Care Case Worker

Work Unit:  Northwest Alberta, Region 8, Grande Prairie

Ministry:   Alberta Human Services

Competition Number:  1039405

Date:  December 2016


  • Foster Care Worker's primary purpose is to supervise and support foster parents to maximize their ability to provide care to children.
  • They also assess potential foster and adoptive parents and accept or reject them based on this assessment.
  • Supervisor has delegated authority to formally approve the application based on workers assessment.
  • They are an intermediary between foster families, foster children and department staff.
  • The major client group are the foster families and Child Protection case managers.

Responsibilities and Activities

  • Recruitment of foster and/or adoptive homes (i.e. manning booths in community, participating in events of Foster Family Week, intake and screening daily).
  • Screening of foster or adoptive applicants by reviewing application information to determine if they meet standards for foster parenting.
  • Receiving calls from individuals interested in fostering or adopting.
  • Providing Pre-Service and Child, Youth and Family Enhancement training.
  • Completing home assessments following departmental Home Assessment Guide which includes face to face interviews with all family members individually, interviews with couple, physical structure and safety features of the home, contact references, schools, other professionals as necessary and approving or rejecting the home.
  • Placement assessment to provide appropriate placements for children where their needs are matched to the foster home's skills.
  • Negotiate, plan and coordinate placements for children.
  • Provide skills and knowledge based training which includes research and development of training material.
  • Ongoing assessment and evaluation of foster parents including an annual formal written evaluation.
  • Facilitate conflict resolution between foster parents and department staff, e.g. working with biological family and possible resistance, fears of foster family, unclear expectations between each party in terms of service plan, department policies, entitlements of foster parents, etc.
  • Educate foster families regarding all systems/programs that impact them and the foster child (Child Protection system, Court system, FSCD, Youth Criminal Justice System, Adoptions, Licensing, etc.).
  • Monitor Child Protection Service delivery in the context of the foster family to ensure optimal information, resources and direction for the foster families in their delivery of service to foster families. Evaluate foster families ability to meet service plan as established and advocate for additional resources as required and/or changes in plan reflecting foster families situation or input.
  • Collaborate with Child Protection case planning - help foster family understand case plan, help case worker understand dynamics or perspective of foster family and to mediate conflicts that arise as a result.

Knowledge, Skills and Abilities



  • Child Youth and Family Enhancement Act, and Policies, which governs actions and provides Legal Authorities.
  • Children involved in Prostitution Act.
  • Child Youth and Family Enhancement protocols and Regional Directives, Foster Care Assessment Manuals.
  • Foster Care policies and procedures and regulations.
  • Domestic Relations Act, FOIP, School Act, Mental Health Act, Indian Act, SFI, criminal code (i.e. sexual assault, pornography), Family Violence Act, Youth Criminal Justice Act.
  • Community/departmental services and resources to facilitate effective referrals.
  • Family dynamics to assess strengths and weaknesses.
  • Child/adolescent development to recognize appropriate/inappropriate behaviour.
  • Adult development and developmental stages of families.
  • Medical, psychological, psychiatric disorders and social problems that impact the child (i.e. FASD) in order to assess the family situation and determine effective intervention.
  • Community services and resources to identify/recommend and assess most suitable resource.
  • Cultural practices, belief systems, including native issues.
  • Cultural awareness of self and others (e.g. ethnic and religion) and impact on fostering.
  • Immigration policies and procedures, i.e. status.
  • CASW-Code of Conduct and Ethics.
  • Indicators of child abuse.
  • Court procedures and protocols to prepare documents and present information in support of petitions.
  • Familiarity with various disorders affecting children, family dynamics, child behaviour management and techniques to provide specific child management strategies around issues of FAS/FAE, sexual abuse, food hoarding, aggression, suicide, effect of trauma on child development, parenting techniques for special needs children.
  • Knowledge of post traumatic stress disorder, drugs and alcohol, separation and loss.


  • Interviewing skills - children and adults for intake of new parents and conducting annual assessments.
  • Assessment skills/analytical - ongoing assessment skills related to making and supporting placement of foster children in home and potential risk factors in parenting special needs children.
  • Conflict resolution.
  • Communication - oral and written.
  • Intervention/crisis management skills/suicide intervention.
  • Grief counselling.
  • Computer skills.
  • Decision making.
  • Mediation/problem solving.
  • Computer skills - ability to use current and learn new programs/software.
  • Negotiation/Advocacy.
  • Organizational and time management.
  • Presentation and training skills.


Back to Top