Raising children can be expensive and if you’re a foster parent, it can be hard to plan your budget! Luckily, there are some easy ways to save money and stretch your dollar.
Ask your social worker if your foster child is eligible for WIC
This supplemental nutrition program can offer assistance for kids in foster care and it can be especially helpful with infants. Some children may qualify for benefits and it can certainly help ease your grocery budget.
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Enjoy a discounted membership at the YMCA
Most YMCAs will offer free or discounted memberships for foster families! From summer camps to sports leagues, this can be a great way to sign your child up for new activities without a lot of added expense.
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See if your child qualifies for free or reduced lunches
Many foster children qualify for free breakfast and lunch at their school. Check with your local school district to see if you need to register your child for the program.
Get a discount on children’s clothing
Many Once Upon a Child stores offer a 10% discount for children in foster care. Since most stores are owned locally, give the store a call before shopping to be sure.
Check local “freecycle” groups
Many communities have local “freecycle” groups where members can donate or request specific items. Search for Facebook groups in your area and you might be surprised what you can find for free! Kids toys and baby items are often available. It’s also a great way to donate items you no longer need!
Ask about membership discounts for foster families
Many community centers and museums will offer discounted memberships for foster families. In our area, there are discounts offered at the science museum, botanical gardens, and other educational places It can be a great way to allow your kids to experience educational opportunities while sticking to a budget.
Consider joining a wholesale club for bulk discounts
Places like Costco and Sam’s Club might not save you money if you’re a family of 3, but if you suddenly become a family of 6, buying in bulk can save serious cash. From diapers to groceries, if you’re able to buy large quantities, you may save time and money.
Look for opportunities for foster families in your communities
Many churches and religious organizations will offer assistance to foster families, especially around the holidays. From toy drives to free babysitting, this can be a great way to offset some unexpected costs. This is also an opportunity to serve other foster families in your neighborhood if you find yourself with extra supplies!
Have you found opportunities to save? Share your tips in the comments!