Stars and Spaulding

Required Stars Training

The first step toward becoming a foster or adoptive parent in Missouri is the agency’s assessment and training program. Everyone goes through the STARS program, with adoptive parents continuing with an additional 12 hours in the Spaulding program. The STARS program equips prospective foster and adoptive families with the skills they’ll need to effectively serve some of Missouri’s most vulnerable children.

The STARS program is important for even the most experienced parents, because fostering and adopting is very different from parenting a child born to you. The STARS program trains parents to skillfully guide children in their care.

Spaulding Program

After STARS training, the additional Spaulding program is offered free of charge for prospective adoptive families. Spaulding training offers families the tools and information that they need to: explain how adoptive families are different; importance of separation, loss, and grief in adoption; understand attachment and its importance in adoption; anticipate challenges and be able to identify strategies for managing challenges as an adoptive family; and to explore the lifelong commitment to a child that adoption brings.

STARS and Spaulding Training sessions are the place to answer your questions, build relationships with other parents and with the license agency to determine whether your family has the ability to meet the children’s needs.

Free 27-hour Training

STARS is a free 27-hour training program that will prepare you to: Protect and nurture foster children; meet the children’s developmental needs and address developmental delays; support relationships between children and their families; connect children with safe, nurturing relationships intended to last a lifetime; work as a member of a professional team; and make important decisions about whether or not fostering or adopting a child is right for you and your family.

In-Home Assessment Process

STARS also includes an in-home assessment process that includes four visits to your home by a Family Development Specialist, who discusses information with prospective foster/adoptive families regarding the state agency and the children in their care. The agency will also discuss with the applicants their own family’s relationships and observe the home environment for compliance with licensing requirements.

"One Heart placed the entire training into the context of foster care as a divine calling to be the hands and feet of Christ in a hurting child’s life. It taught us how to put the challenging times that would inevitably come into a Christ-centered perspective."

Eric, adopt dad