There are several ways that a person can gain experience in being a guardian. We suggest you begin by joining an FSGA chapter so as to meet other guardians in your area and learn about their experiences. You will be able to network with other guardians in your area, as well as assess your community’s need for this type of service.
Secondly, you can take the 8 hr. (family) guardianship training, which is required of people who serve 2 or less persons. That will give you an overview of the requirements of Florida guardians and you can begin representing a few people to see if this is something in which you would like to become more involved. Also, by going this route first, you will not need to meet the continuing education requirements.
If you decide to expand the number of people you represent, or find that your services are in demand, you will need to take the 40 hour (professional) guardianship training, as well as register with the Statewide Public Guardianship Office, within the Florida Department of Elder Affairs. Once you have become a professional guardian, you should consider building a relationship with an experienced guardian in your local chapter. You could consider joining an existing professional guardianship practice in your area, or asking if they were interested in being your mentor, while you develop you own practice. Actually, the Statewide Public Guardianship Office is developing a mentoring program to facilitate this. Until that is ready, contact one of our Chapters or the Executive Office for assistance.