Promoting foster parenting has not been easy in Japan, a country where blood ties and traditional family structures are paramount. But in recent years, a home setting has begun to trump institutional care in officials' views of what's best for children who face abuse or abandonment. And now, the government is revamping its foster-care system to increase the number of caseworkers and better promote the option for families. The number of children in Japan, a nation of 127 million people, is still very small. In 2007, 35,925 children were placed in institutional foster care, a 12 percent increase from 2000. During the same period, the number of children who live with foster parents grew 68 percent to 3,633.