Frequently Asked Questions

We have answers to common questions here. For additional information on a topic not covered or a more specific answer, please contact our main office or one of our regional locations near you, listed on the Contact page.

For Families


What is treatment foster care?
Treatment foster care is for kids ages two to 21 who need extra structure and support. A major focus of treatment foster care is teaching older children functional skills—social, independent-living or academic—to help them succeed in school, with their families and in work settings.
What are the requirements to become a foster parent?
You must be at least 21 years of age. You must be financially secure and self-supporting. Reimbursement for many of the costs associated with caring for a foster child is provided. You must have room in your home and your schedule for children, and must fulfill the criteria covered in our home study, including a background check. You do not need to be married to foster a child.
Can I adopt the child I foster?
It depends. Once approved through UMFS, you will be able to foster or adopt. If a child cannot return home or live with a relative, it is possible the child would become available for adoption.
Do I have to be Methodist?
No, there are no specific religious requirements or restrictions to participation.
What type of children do you serve?
The treatment foster care program serves a variety of children with physical, emotional and behavioral disorders.
What kinds of kids DON’T you work with?
The treatment foster care program does not accept children who are currently at risk for harming themselves or others.
What training and support do participating parents receive?
All of our foster parents complete pre-service training using the PRIDE model, with 12 ongoing hours of additional training per year.

For Professionals

Child & Family Healing Center

Do you do emergency placements?
Not at this time.
What is your admissions process?
Our admissions team works with parents, school districts, court systems, physicians, hospitals, psychologists, psychiatrists and social workers to identify the unique needs of each child. We work closely with the referring agency and Virginia Medicaid  to assess fit. Once approved, we gather all the required documentation and paperwork to schedule an admission date.
What is the average length of a stay in your program?
It depends on the individual, but, on average, nine to 12 months.
Can parents and guardians visit their children?
Yes, we strongly believe that the best results come when the family is involved in treatment. Parents and guardians will participate in family therapy, and expected to attend Fourth Sundays once a month.
How do I make a referral?
Please fill out the referral inquiry form here or contact our admissions office at 804.239.1277. We accept males and females ages 11 to 17 at admission with an IQ of 65 or above. We typically do not treat active runaways, those who are actively suicidal or those who are prone to excessive physical aggression, but we will assess every individual on a case-by-case basis.
What is a typical child in your program like?
We work with children aged 11 to 17 at time of admission with various mental health needs who have the capacity to form relationships with others, can manage safety needs within an unlocked environment, and can cognitively complete our insight-based therapeutic curriculum.
What residential treatment do you provide for kids with neurological differences?
We serve boys and girls with autism spectrum disorders and other neurological differences, like mild traumatic brain injury, Tourette’s Syndrome, ADHD and learning disabilities.
Is your school accredited?
Yes. Charterhouse School is fully accredited by Virginia Association of Specialized Education Facilities. Students attend year-round.
How is the program funded?
UMFS’ Child & Family Healing Center contracts with many state child welfare, juvenile justice and children’s mental health agencies to provide both residential and community-based treatment for children involved with those systems. UMFS is a provider for Virginia Medicaid. We accept children into our residential treatment program from across Virginia. If we do not currently contract with your locality, we can develop single-case agreements with county or municipal governments, school districts, etc.

Intensive Care Coordination

How can I get Intensive Care Coordination Services?
ICC is a FAPT-funded service. To begin the process, contact your local FAPT Team and request ICC.
What is Intensive Care Coordination?
ICC is a facilitation service that brings both natural and professional supports to the table to create a single, integrated treatment plan for the family. The goal is to use a team-based approach that supports the family as they identify their own needs and advocate for their own services. Based on the High Fidelity Wraparound model, ICC is highly individualized and family driven.
What are Natural Supports?
Natural supports are individuals who continue to support the family after professional services have ended.
How is Intensive Care Coordination different from a Family Planning Meeting/Team Decision Making?
ICC includes monthly team meetings that are individualized to each client and include one centralized plan from which all members of the team operate. FPM’s/TDM’s are run by the Department of Social Services and are utilized when there is a change in placement. ICC Team Meetings are where the Plan of Care is developed and other decisions are made. No decisions are made outside of team meetings. ICC uses a specific evidence-informed model (High Fidelity Wraparound) to help the family develop hope for the future, teach the skills necessary to develop their own service plans, access their own resources, and to be as independent as possible. The ICC Facilitator is responsible for checking in with the family and team members between team meetings to support them in accomplishing their goals. ICC uses a team approach in order to move the family towards self-efficacy with minimal professional involvement.
What is UMFS’s role in the ICC Program?
As a mini-grant recipient, UMFS is collecting data on the impact of ICC services through the use of the National Outcome Measures. UMFS is also an ICC provider.
Who can receive ICC Services?
ICC services are being recommended for youth up to the age of 21 who are currently in, or at risk of, an out-of-home placement due to a behavioral or mental health need.
How long do ICC Services last?
Each ICC case is individualized to the specific needs of the client and their family. The service continues until the treatment goals identified by the family and their team have been accomplished.
Who is on a family’s treatment team?
At the beginning of ICC, the family identifies the individuals they would like to participate on their treatment team. The treatment team will include both professional and natural supports.
How is Intensive Care Coordination different from Case Management?
An ICC Facilitator is not responsible for delivering case management services, but rather is tasked with creating a team environment where all goals and tasks are shared equally. The purpose of ICC is to use a team approach in order to move the family towards self-efficacy and minimal professional involvement.

Treatment Foster Care

What is the age range of children you accept?
Our program accepts foster children from ages 0 to 20.
How do I make a referral?
Contact our intake specialists by filling out a form.
Where are your offices?
Please see our locations.
Where do the foster children attend school?
Children attend the local school in the district of their foster home.
Where can I view the outcomes of your program?
View our Impact page.
Do you do emergency placements?
Yes. Please call 855-FOR-UMFS to make an emergency referral.
How are you funded?
Funding is provided by the local Comprehensive Services Act office.
Do you offer scholarships for the program?
Not at this time.
What kinds of kids DON’T you work with?
Children that are currently at risk for harming themselves or others.
Can I visit the foster home prior to placement?
Yes. That must be arranged through our intake staff.
What work do you do with birth parents?
Our agency makes every effort to work in partnership with the locality to help the child and family move toward the goal of permanency.
What training and support do participating parents receive?
All of UMFS’ resource parents complete pre-service training and, once approved, are dually certified to foster or adopt. We provide our parents with 24-hour on call support, frequent visits by staff to the home, training, respite and monthly support groups.
Will your agency transport children for visitation?
UMFS works in partnership with the referring Department of Social Services to work towards the facilitation of visitation.
Do you cover day care costs?
Not at this time.