Intensive Treatment Foster Care Programs

These programs are designed to meet the higher needs and challenges of some of the children/youth in foster care.

Intensive Services Foster Care (ISFC)

The ISFC program serves children and youth who need treatment and behavioral supports. It also serves children/youth with special health care needs. The program makes sure that they live in a home-based family setting, while getting the services they need. ISFC foster parents provide close supervision, and support to children/youth. They also team with providers, social workers, family members, and other experts. They work together to help the child/youth grow and thrive.

ISFC foster families are active members of the children's team. They meet the children's care needs. For a family to become an ISFC home and provide a higher level of care for children, they must be: 

  • At least 25 years old.  
  • Approved through the Resource Family Approval (RFA) program.  
  • Finished with more training before placement. Training covers trauma, behavior de-escalation skills, and CPR classes. (Hours may vary depending on which agency you work with).  
  • Have training, coaching, and work towards forming a plan to make sure the children are doing well.   
  • More requirements may apply based on the agency  

The ISFC program provides services and supports such as getting therapeutic services and trauma-informed care. It also provides support as the child goes into a permanent home. ISFC program members who qualify for mental health, health and school services in the community will be set up by the Foster Family Agency (FFA) or County.

Eligible youth:

  • Children who have emotional or behavioral problems. This can affect them at home, school, or in the community.  
  • Have finished with success and/or leaving a residential facility (STRTP).  
  • Are at risk of entering or leaving a psychiatric hospital.  
  • Are living with a RFA family, relative or NREFM caregivers. They must also be at risk of losing their placement due to their behavioral issues. 

ISFC Program provides the following:

  • Places one child at a time with a family. There is a consideration for sibling sets of two requiring placement together.  
  • Matches the family with experience and a child to meet their needs.  
  • The foster parent are a part of the treatment team.  
  • A counselor to offer emotional support and mentoring for child and resource parent. This includes modeling skills.  
  • Case managers for meetings to problem-solve and treatment plan.  
  • The treatment model is trauma-focused therapy.  
  • There is a family setting with better chances for permanence.

If you want to be an ISFC home, please contact these agencies to get more information: 

Specialized Homes (ISFC+)

Specialized Homes (Professional Parent Homes) helps children heal and recover from trauma. They provide in-depth treatment to children in a home setting. They are in the home 24/7 to meet the children's needs up to 6 months. This supports children to  work on their behaviors. Children receives support from a diverse professional team. They can receive support from important people in their lives too. Becoming a Specialized Home requires the completion of: 

  • RFA process; and 
  • Training to care for children with a variety of behavioral needs.


For more information about the program, please contact these agencies: 

Therapeutic Foster Care (TFC)

TFC is a behavioral service provided by a foster family. Youth under 21 who are Medi-Cal eligible and meet medical necessity receive TFC services. Parents trained in TFC provide treatment to the child on their team. Families who provide TFC for a child in the home receive a TFC and foster care rates. The foster parents also record Medi-Cal notes to chart treatment services.

For more information about the program, please contact these agencies: 

©2024 County of Santa Clara. All rights reserved.