Babies urgently in need of foster homes in Clark County

Published: Jan. 17, 2023 at 10:31 PM PST
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LAS VEGAS, Nev. (FOX5) - Clark County is holding emergency recruitment sessions to help alleviate a crucial shortage among foster families: homes available to take in babies.

Very few foster homes in Clark County are available to specifically take in babies. At Child Haven, there are 30 children under the age of 6, and 16 under the age of two. “It’s been years since we’ve seen a number this significant,” Murano said. Children stay at Child Haven when no foster home is available.

“In most areas of the country, they don’t struggle with recruitment of foster parents for those younger children. That is an anomaly that we have that issue here. We don’t know if it’s related to maybe issues around daycare. If it’s related to issues around the 24/7 nature of our community?” she said.

More than 3,300 children in Clark County are in foster care; most children can stay with a relative, but 684 foster homes are available to take in other children. According to Jill Murano of Clark County, there is a need for up to 400 other homes.

“It’s the lack of regular foster homes that’s really creating this crisis,” she said, noting that there are not more children or babies coming into the system.

Murano said hundreds of families have opted out of the foster program in the past two years, and she and others suspect that inflation or work challenges have led to obstacles to becoming a foster parent. There are hopes that more state funding can provide incentives or ease the financial burden for families.

To address the shortage of foster homes for infants, Clark County is holding a two-week condensed course for families. The first session starts Jan. 27. The typical course lasts nine weeks. You can call the Infant Foster Care Recruitment office at (702) 455-0181.