All Children - All Families: Core Competencies

The competency-based training will increase the ability of an organization’s staff members to understand LGBTQ clients and will include issues of cultural identity, family formation and development, family law and more.

The training should ensure that participants will:

  • Be aware of their own beliefs, values and assumptions in relation to LGBTQ people, and will recognize how their interaction with LGBTQ people affects their ability to fulfill their professional roles.
  • Be comfortable with appropriate terminology relating to the LGBTQ community, and will understand the concepts of coming out, heterosexism/homophobia, and gender identity or gender expression.
  • Have accurate information about LGBTQ people and be able to distinguish common myths and stereotypes from facts.
  • Be knowledgeable about how to interact with LGBTQ individuals in an affirming, welcoming manner.
  • Be knowledgeable about laws relating to LGBTQ adoption and foster placements in relevant jurisdictions.
  • Develop empathy toward LGBTQ parents and will understand the value of LGBTQ families in serving children and youth in the foster care system.
  • Have accurate information about LGBTQ parents and their children - based on evidenced-based research - and therefore be able to distinguish common myths and stereotypes from facts.
  • Know concrete steps they can take to create affirming environments for LGBTQ foster and adoptive parents.
  • Feel prepared to adapt their parent recruitment practices to be more inclusive of LGBTQ families.
  • Understand the value of actively engaging their local LGBTQ community as partners in finding and providing qualified, loving foster and adoptive homes for children who need them.
  • Develop comfort and competency in assessing LGBTQ prospective parents, utilizing criteria that are warranted, appropriate and grounded in a solid understanding of the realities and experiences affecting LGBTQ families.
  • Develop strategies for eliminating bias against LGBTQ parents in the child-matching process, and will identify ways to support LGBTQ families while they search and are selected for the right children to join their family.
  • Feel confident in their abilities to present LGBTQ parents to children in a strengths-based and age-appropriate manner, and to help children manage any questions and challenges that arise from being a part of an LGBTQ family.
  • Understand the challenges that LGBTQ adoptive families may encounter at various stages of their family life.
  • Explore the intersection of LGBTQ issues and other issues facing adoptive families.
  • Learn how to be allies for LGBTQ families as they interact with birth families, other foster/adoptive families, schools and services providers related to the children placed in their homes.
  • Be knowledgeable about the resources, tools and skills needed to support LGBTQ families throughout their case and post-adoption.