Car seat issues for foster children
I start my Pride classes on Wednesday and I am so very excited. Ok well my husband and I were thinking of different things we needed to get the room ready. We are doing foster to adopt for infants to 3 yrs old. How do you as foster parents deal with the car seat issue? Obviously for an infant you would need a infant car seat and toddler for an older child. Since you really dont know what you are getting til you get the call what do you do about this? Thanks.

Kim
Well, the infant carrier and base will see you through a year if you get the newer ones.

But you can also get one car seat that will likely take them from 5lbs. through age 3 by turning it from rear-facing to forward. It doesn't have the convenience of a carrier, but then you could also use a body carrier when they're small (a Moby wrap or Baby Bjorn--whatever) and then it wouldn't matter.

For us, we already had both because we had a bio son.

I will say this: if you go with the infant carrier that snaps into a base, keep an eye out at garage sales, etc. for a Snap-N-Go because these are a dream. Wink I have it, plus a double version and the sit-n-stand (which is enormous and I really don't recommend it--far less useful than I thought it would be).

And if you get caught off-guard, DYFS can always get a car seat for you even if it's temporary (although I've heard of them just giving it to you sometimes--maybe it depends on the office?)
I had the same worries as you- and I'm single, so I didn't know how I would go to the store get a carseat with a new foster child in tow if I had no carseat to put them in!! but, when my newborn was placed with me, dyfs had purchased a new carseat and delivered him in this.

a convertible carseat is a good option; just keep it in the box until you get a placement; that way, if the child comes with a seat, you can return it.
Thats what I was thinking as I found a carseat that holds an infant to toddler. Its a Graco and its only $80, so I figured at some point after I am licensed I will pick it up and just leave it in the box with the receipt if I dont need it I will just return it,
I caution people from buying a car seat at a yard sale because you have no way of knowing if it was in a car accident. If it was it should be thrown away. Also plastic weakens as it ages and goes threw extreme temperature changes (winter to summer) so car seats are required to have "expiration" dates on them now as an estimated time as to when it is likely that use and normal wear and tear would weaken the plastic.
To add onto lonvinheart's post, my home inspector told me that foster parents shouldn't use "used" carseats...I can understand why- you don't know if it was in an accident or how old it is.
Kimyas, we have a similar age range and I picked up a Cosco Scenera, which is under $50 and goes from 5 - 40lbs. I did some research and it seemed to be able to fit chunkier kids than the Graco equivalent. I wanted something that gave me as much leeway as possible. I was very impressed with the seat when it arrived - it seems pretty comfy.

I figured that if a child arrived w/ an infant seat, I could use this once they outgrew the baby seat if they were still with me. Also, if the kid moved once he/she was riding in the Scenera, I could send that on and know that the kid would be in a safe, size-appropriate seat that would last them a while in their next home.

I picked one up after Thanksgiving for $35, I think - they seem to go on sale for ~$40 fairly often at Sears & Kmart.

Yes, they just need to send me a placement so I will stop obsessing about baby gear!
DYFS will provide the car seat; just remind them when you get the call. They additionally provided a front facing car seat when my son got older, as well as a high chair.
QueenEsther said...
Kimyas, we have a similar age range and I picked up a Cosco Scenera, which is under $50 and goes from 5 - 40lbs. I did some research and it seemed to be able to fit chunkier kids than the Graco equivalent. I wanted something that gave me as much leeway as possible. I was very impressed with the seat when it arrived - it seems pretty comfy.

I figured that if a child arrived w/ an infant seat, I could use this once they outgrew the baby seat if they were still with me. Also, if the kid moved once he/she was riding in the Scenera, I could send that on and know that the kid would be in a safe, size-appropriate seat that would last them a while in their next home.

I picked one up after Thanksgiving for $35, I think - they seem to go on sale for ~$40 fairly often at Sears & Kmart.

Yes, they just need to send me a placement so I will stop obsessing about baby gear!



Thank you. I looked on Kmart site and they have the car seat for 39.99. I think when I get a chance I will pick one of these up. Good idea to have one around.
Glad I can help. How was your first class?
QueenEsther said...
Glad I can help. How was your first class?


It was awesome and I am so excited to get started. We go to our next class tomorrow (Saturday). Now I need to do some investigatin on child care as I work full time and a peditrician.

Kim
If you've never before had the pleasure of installing a carseat, it may be a good idea to take that new carseat, and your car, to the nearest police station or fire department that has certified car seat techs, to show you how to properly install it. LATCH, tethering, angles...there's a lot to it, and the instruction booklet is usually as clear as Mud, with illustrations that do not seem to apply to your particular model. And once it's attached correctly, according to your particular car's manual, it needs to be snugged up rock solid, so it does not move more than 1 inch in any direction, no matter how hard you yank on it. For the uninitiated, you actually have to climb into the thing while tugging hard on the belts. Better to practice all this without a child within earshot, as there is usually much sweating and cussing involved with your first few attempts! I think the stats say that more than half the carseats on the road are improperly installed, and therefor are not protecting the child from spinal cord injury or death.
Kimyas, enjoy them! We met a lot of great people in the classes.

Chickie, you are so right about the ordeal of installing car seats! I should have stretched before I tried to put one in the back of our Mini Cooper. Not fun at all.
QueenEsther said...
Kimyas, enjoy them! We met a lot of great people in the classes.

Chickie, you are so right about the ordeal of installing car seats! I should have stretched before I tried to put one in the back of our Mini Cooper. Not fun at all.



Did you go thru Just Babies for your training?
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