As part of our onboarding process for new hosts, we offer host homes training. Our training is specifically designed to prepare you for becoming a host home provider with Finally Family Homes. There are 6 sessions in total. Keep reading to start session one. Subsequent sessions are linked at the bottom of each session or you can click on a specific session from here.
Session 1 – About the Host Homes Program
Session 1 – Overview of Training and Expectations for Hosts
Session Objectives: The goal of this session is to help you better understand what to expect as a Host Home Provider with Finally Family Homes. We will cover information about the young adults who are participating, your role, and expectations about what you will do and provide, as well as what you can expect from us.
**Please note that on call assistance is only available M-F 9am – 5pm
Transcript of the Training
As you prepare to become a Host Home Provider, you may have many questions about the youth, how the program works, and what kind of support you can expect during the process.
We want you to know that you will not be alone in this journey. Our staff is there for you as well as for the young adults. It is important that you know that there will always be someone you can reach out to for support no matter what the situation might be.
About the Host Homes Program
Who Host Homes are for
Our host home program provides a safe place to stay for Santa Clarita youth (18-24 years old) struggling with homelessness, especially those who fell into homelessness because they aged out of foster care without a home.
The young adults who stay in Host Homes are referred to as guests. Our guests are transitional-aged youth (18-24) who were put into foster care, and at no fault of their own never found a forever family.
Many of these youth are ambitious, hard-working college students, or were.. until they had to drop out due to housing instability.
Why housing is a struggle for youth aging out of foster care.
- 20% of young adults who age out of foster care become homeless the day they age out. And another 10% experience homelessness in the following 18 months.
- There’s an affordable housing crisis with years long waits for housing.
- These young adults don’t have a family to bounce back to in hard times, like other young adults do.
Why Host Homes?
Safer non-institutional housing, rooted in community,
- High success rates
- Creative solution to our extreme affordable housing crisis
- Provides a unique opportunity for youth to connect and build relationships with caring adults in the community.
Host Home Program Expectations
Host Home Provider Expectations
- Uphold the mission and values of Finally Family Homes. Our mission is to partner with young adults who are aging out of foster care to help them achieve lasting success in life.
- By providing a Host Home, you provide a place for security and belonging to a young adult who’s struggling with housing, so that they can get on their feet and build a better future for themselves.
- In our next training session, we will go in-depth to help you get to know who we are and what we stand for.
- Hold to our Host Homes Policies including:
- Treating your guests with respect and dignity, looking after their best interests and not participating in practices that are in any way harmful.
- Creating and adhering to healthy boundaries with your guests, including respecting their privacy and keeping personal information in confidence. This includes not sharing any photos, vidoes, or recording of your guests without their express permission.
- Holding high standard of conduct as representatives of Finally Family Homes and role models to our young adults.
- Hosts will respect and honor commitments made to Finally Family Homes, including attending check-ins and ongoing support trainings.
- Provide and maintain a safe room for your guest with access to a bathroom and kitchen.
- For more details you can refer to our policies which you received as you were onboarded. Additionally, we will review guidelines for healthy boundaries in a later session as part of this training.
What you are NOT expected to provide as a Host Home
- You do not have to become best friends or family to our young adults. We know that sometimes relationships work and sometimes they don’t. We hope that a relationship will develop, but it’s not an expectation. We will go more in depth on this topic in our training session on expectations.
- Chances are you are not a professional therapist and we don’t expect you to provide therapeutic services to your guests. However, we do ask that you respect the experiences our young adults have faced and be respectful of the unique struggles they may deal with. We will go in more dept on being trauma informed in session 4 of this training.
- You are not your guest’s parent, coach, or case worker. We don’t expect you to keep on top of them for school, jobs, or other issues of personal growth. You welcome to cheer them on and support them if they want to share that part of their journey with you, but you are not an enforcer. The best thing you can do to support your guest is listen. We will go over some great tips for being a powerful listener in session 5 of this training.
- Aside from the room itself and space in your welcoming home, you are not expected to provide any other money or tangible items to your guests. You are welcome to invite them to dinner or offer to share things, but this is not an expectation of hosts.
What You Can Expect From Us
We will provide ongoing support for you as you serve as a host. This will look like:
- Regular one-on-one check-ins with the Host Homes manager.
- A Host Homes Handbook which includes a list of additional resources.
- Ongoing training workshops.
- On-call assistance M-F 9am – 5pm for any issues with your guests.
- A private Facebook group with other hosts: www.facebook.com/groups/ffhhostsupport/
We will provide your guest with ongoing support during their stay with you. This will look like:
- Providing case management, helping the young adult build and achieve their goals for growth and independence.
- Directing youth to resources to assist them with any additional needs, including food, clothing, furniture, etc.
- Providing life skills training.
- Providing your guest with support in navigating sharing a house with you.
We will facilitate the matching process with you and your guest.
- That includes processing applications and screen all young adults who are interested in staying in a Host Home to see if they are a good fit for this program. *All young adults 18 and older will be required to do a background check.
- We will then provide approved young adults with a list of Host Homes to choose from.
- We will set up and facilitate meetings between our young adults and the hosts they are interested in staying with to help each party discover if it may be a good fit.
- We will set up a tour and final meet and greet of the homes selected by youth.
- We will notify Hosts of the outcome of what our young adult decides. Or notify them if you decide it’s not a good fit.
We will facilitate the agreements and contracts signed before the young adult moves in.
- We will help coach you and the young adult in coming to an understanding of the housing rules.
- We will provide a contract to be signed before move in, that clearly describes the relationship between you, your guest, and Finally Family Homes.
We will facilitate the move-in process:
- We will provide the young adults with any support they need to move in – including a moving truck, furniture, bedding, etc.
Host Homes are a safe and cost-effective solution to the need for housing for young adults aging out of foster care. As a participant in the Host Homes program, hosts will be expected to uphold the mission, values, and policies of Finally Family Homes will provide a safe room for their guest. Hosts are not expected to become a guest’s best friend, therapist, or parent. Neither are they expected to provide for guests financially. Finally Family Homes will facilitate the matching, living agreements, and move-in processes as well as provide ongoing support for you and your guest.