Because of the need and impact
The need is great, but the impact is even greater. Greater for the children in foster care, for their biological families and for you, the foster parent.
For us, part of “why foster” is answered through a child’s story. We understand and have seen the very real and urgent needs of these children. But that’s not the only answer. The opportunity to impact the journey of a child ignites our hearts and the hearts of foster families to bring love and care into the life of every child in need.
To answer the question, “why foster care,” you must understand…
"Fostering is about more than helping a child in need or providing a safe place to live. It’s about sharing love, showing them a new path, giving them a chance to thrive, and helping reunite families for a better future."
- Jackie, Foster Parent
HOW THEY GOT HERE
It’s important for foster families to understand how a child reaches foster and adoptive services. This is the journey that tells a child’s history and the often painful path that led them to be taken away from home. Most children come into foster care because of neglect. The majority of these children have lived in unsafe home situations, or with a parent battling significant substance abuse or mental health disorders. In other circumstances, children are removed by the state due to varying forms of abuse.
The Short Term Goal
The short term goal of foster care is to meet the physical and emotional needs of foster children as a member of the foster family. Under the care of foster parents, a child first receives shelter – a crucial necessity to prevent further abuse or neglect. Once a child feels safe they can begin to receive the nurture and support of their foster family, allowing the biological parents adequate time for their own rehabilitation and treatment. By providing a healthy environment filled with love and acceptance, foster parents play a vital role in stabilizing a child’s emotional well-being. And, importantly, the emotional patterns learned in an abusive environment CAN be changed, preventing the cycle of abuse through generations.
The Ultimate Goal
Ultimately the goal is permanency – to find a loving and stable home where a child can be loved, feel safe and be given the opportunity to succeed. Often permanency means reuniting with their biological parents or other family members, but sometimes permanency means adoption into another loving family.
Without permanency, kids can age out of foster care and it’s a path to a life full of struggle and often leads to homelessness and poverty. This is why foster care is critical, to bridge the needs of a family and help the child in need. Foster care makes a long-term impact not only on the foster child, but also on the foster family.