Foster Care & Kinship Care


Mi’kmaw Family and Children’s Services of Nova Scotia is committed to helping families care for their children. However when children cannot remain at home as a result of serious concerns about their safety and protection, they come into the care of our Agency and deserve a caring and supportive home. We make every effort to find a family to care for the child until the child can return home.

Where possible, our preferred option is to place our children with a member of the child’s immediate or extended family or a member of the community known to the child or youth (Kinship Care). If that is not possible, foster care may be the best alternative (Regular Foster Care).

Foster parents provide a temporary home for children who are in the care of our Agency. Children may need foster care for just a few days, a week, several months or possibly years. Regardless of the time in care, our children need the same care every child does: a safe environment with nurturing, encouraging and personalized attention.

Federation of Foster Families Nova Scotia

As this foster mother spoke about her experience of fostering, she said. “I have learned a lot through fostering … most importantly; to make a difference you have to commit to the children.”



Kinship care is an important placement option for our children who cannot live with their parent(s) due to concerns related to their safety and well-being, such as abuse or neglect.

Kinship care is a family home that is approved to care for a child in need and the caregiver(s) has a family connection or significant relationship to the child, (e.g. grandparent, aunt, close family friend).This allows the children to continue to strengthen their ties to family, friends, culture and traditions.

Another foster mother stated, “I am a native woman and I am so proud of looking after our own.” She also stated, “All of the kids have brought me a lot of joy”.


The difference between Kinship care and regular Foster Care is Kinship homes ONLY provide care for a specific child or sibling group.Kinship Care providers receive the same support from the Agency that regular Foster Families with the Agency receive.


You are at least 19 years old You are related to the child or have a connection to the child. You can be married, single, divorced or widowed and come from all cultural backgrounds. You may rent or own their own home, be retired or employed outside the home. You are willing to participate in training and an assessment.

As she looked over her decade plus years of being a foster parent, this foster mother said, “It was harder than I expected it to be, [but] I have challenged myself to exceed the expectations.”


The decision to become a foster parent was “a personal decision for us” said this grandmother who is raising her grandson.  “We are not a replacement for his mother”.  Although this grandmother admits there have been challenges along the way, she said, “It has been rewarding for us … You have to be willing to sacrifice.”

content 14FOSTER PARENTS (Regular and Kinship) PROVIDE:

  • a child with love and care in a familiar setting
  • parents with a sense of hope that their child will remain connected to their birth family
  • families with a sense of trust, stability and comfort
  • an ability to support and maintain lifelong traditions and memories
  • support to a child in building healthy relationships within the family
  • guidance and reinforcement of a child’s cultural identity and positive self-esteem


Foster parents (Regular and Kinship) work with our social workers as part of a team to develop and support a plan for each child or youth in care. Our primary goal is to reunite a child or youth with their family. Where this is not possible, the plan may include exploring alternative permanency options such as legal custody by a family member, adoption or an independent living situation for our older youth. Foster parents provide stability and a caring home that encourages a child or youth’s growth and development. While the legal responsibility for the child or youth remains with the agency, foster parents play an important role in the young person’s daily life.

At Mi’kmaw Family and Children’s Services, we work with families who are overwhelmed by what is going on their lives and as such need short term and sometimes long term care for their children and/or youth. We work to maintain the close connection between children and their family, community and culture. We believe in the power of family and aim to reunite children with their family as soon as it is safe to do so. We are seeking caring Mi'kmaw families residing both on and off First Nation communities who are willing to share their homes and provide foster care to our children in need.



  • Children come into care because there is a conflict within the family, because of a parent's illness or incapability to take care of their child/children.
  • Some children may come into care because the family cannot provide adequate care of the necessities of life.
  • Other children may have been neglected, abused or abandoned.



  • Can range in age from infancy to 19 years
  • Can also come from diverse cultural, religious and family backgrounds.
  • Many are teenagers; some are brothers and sisters.
  • Some foster children face physical, emotional and mental challenges.
  • Each foster child is going through a difficult period in their family life and need the care offered by foster parents.
  • Many require not only love, warmth and acceptance, but consistency, structure and guidance.
  • All are unique

When talking about how being a foster family has changed their family, this foster family said, “It has brought us closer together. Made us realize there are kids out there who need love and support. I think it changed up us for the better.”



  • Experienced Parents
  • Young couples raising their birth children
  • Single persons Couples who want to parent
  • Gay / Lesbian
  • People with no special background in child care
  • Have a genuine love and interest in children as well as a sense of community responsibility


To find out about the process, evaluation and training required to become a foster parent, please contact:


Phone: 902-758-3553 / 1-800-263-8686


Phone: 902-379-2443 ‘1-800-263-8300

Foster Parents provide, warmth, safety, stability and guidance for every child and youth in care.

“It has let me know I’ve done something, I’ve given back. Just to hear someone else’s child say, ‘I love you’,” said this foster parent. Another foster mother said, “I feel blessed. I feel like I have made a contribution to our First Nation community, to those children who need a home.”