Frequently Asked Questions
How do I report abuse or neglect?
Suspected abuse or neglect of children may be reported 24 hours a day, seven days a week, at (215) 683-6100 (also TTY), or to the State Hotline, at (800) 932-0313.
Do I have to give my name when I report?
Reports can be made anonymously. However, when the reporter does give a name, it is not revealed to anyone. This practice is strictly enforced.
What are the requirements to be a foster parent?
First, you must have a strong commitment to children, abundant patience and understanding and, above all else, a big heart with love to spare. You must also be over 21 years old, single, married or living in a relationship, and not convicted of violent acts or crimes against children. You must be able to provide appropriate sleeping space for foster children apart from the foster parent(s); medical clearance; and references. You must be willing to participate in a home study process and in training; must have a demonstrated ability in caring for children and their families, and must have sufficient income. For more information on becoming a foster parent, please call 215-683-4DHS and an informational packet will be sent to your address.
How do I adopt a child?
To adopt a Philadelphia child, call 1-800-TO ADOPT and request the PhillyKids Connection. For PA, call 1-800-585-SWAN (7926) – Statewide Adoption Network - or go to www.adoptpakids.org. Both the "PhillyKids Connection" and SWAN will refer you to an agency for a home study and to start the process.
What is the Youth Study Center?
The Youth Study Center is a secure detention facility in which youthful offenders await their hearing before Juvenile Court, or where they wait for placement following the hearing. Visits from parents are permitted and may occur daily during scheduled visiting hours.
Where do I go if I need help with parenting?
Parent Action Network provides information on and referral to parenting education and support programs throughout the city. Parents can call 215-P-A-R-E-N-T-S and they will be referred to services available in their community. They can also receive a free copy of Helping Hands, a parenting resource directory.