Connected Foster Care

Connected is a private, licensed foster care placement service, supported by Arkansas Southern Baptist Churches, that seeks to receive, restore and reunify children and families.

In partnership with the Arkansas Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS), Connected staff is recruiting foster homes and training foster families in at least 20 Arkansas Counties. A Connected caseworker visits foster homes at least twice monthly.

Connected provides and/or mobilizes resources needed to make foster care successful in Arkansas. It also gives Southern Baptist churches an opportunity to take an active role in ministry to foster care children, families and state foster care workers.

The program helps establish a structure for the foster community; recruit, facilitate and provide training for foster families, in accordance with the Arkansas Division of Children and Families (DCFS). Furthermore, Connected will facilitate multi-church partnerships; and improve the child welfare system through the involvement of the local church.

Hands-on support for foster families is also provided through local Southern Baptist churches. These support services include prepared meals for foster families upon arrival of a foster child, babysitting, tutoring, respite care, transportation, food/clothing closets and school supplies.

In addition, Connected partners churches with DCFS family services workers, offering support, encouragement and other needed services. Assistance for birth families is also obtainable through local churches.

To learn how you can become a foster parent, contact:

Lynn Szczepanik, BSW, MSA
Area Director
lszczepanik@arkansasfamilies.org
(479) 646-2100, ext. 103

Ryan Ropp, LMSW
Connected Foster Care Coordinator
rropp@arkansasfamilies.org
(870) 367-3365

Vicki Wickliff
Connected Foster Care Coordinator
vwickliff@arkansasfamilies.org
(870) 648-3050