A pre-placement visit is a crucial step in the process of kinship care. It allows the child and potential caregiver to meet each other in a comfortable setting, start building a relationship, and also assess the potential fit.
Here is a suggested plan for a two-hour pre-placement visit:
**Hour 1 - Introduction and Getting Comfortable**
Welcome (10 minutes):
Start with a warm welcome and introduction. Make sure the child feels safe and secure. Offer them a beverage or a snack if they'd like one.
House Tour (20 minutes):
Show the child around the house. Let them see where they would be sleeping, eating, and spending their time. Introduce them to any pets in the home. Make it clear that this could be their space and that they are welcome.
Casual Conversation (30 minutes):
Sit down in a comfortable space and engage the child in light conversation. Ask about their interests, hobbies, favorite subjects in school, or favorite foods. This is not an interview, but rather a friendly chat to get to know them better.
**Hour 2 - Activities and Wrap-Up**
Activity (30 minutes):
Do a fun activity together, such as a board game, arts and crafts, or playing in the backyard. This can help break the ice and create a relaxed environment.
Discussion About Potential Placement (20 minutes):
If the child seems comfortable, gently discuss the idea of them staying with you. Use age-appropriate language and reassure them that their feelings and opinions matter.
Q&A Session (20 minutes):
Allow the child to ask any questions they may have about you, your home, or anything else. Answer honestly and reassure them that no question is off-limits.
Goodbye (10 minutes):
As the visit ends, reassure the child that you enjoyed their visit and look forward to possibly spending more time with them.
Remember, the main goal of this visit is to make the child feel comfortable and safe. It's important to be patient, understanding, and compassionate. The child may be feeling a range of emotions, and it's essential to respect their feelings and provide them with support during this time.