Foster Care and Adoption, Part II: Kids in Your 'Hood

As I mentioned in the part I, I was not looking for kids or planning for a family, but left a prayer meeting convinced that adoption was my next step...and my desire for children only grew as we progressed in our foster training.

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As we engaged in our classes, I really didn't have a country to adopt from I was set on...many of our friends do.  China, Vietnam, Russia, even the USA.  These are all awesome.  I didn't have an inclination, neither did Sarah really.  Kind of like the little girl dreaming of the wedding in her future, many dream of their future adoption, and I was kind of disappointed in myself: I didn't have a 'dream country.'

Well, it all works together.

Our teachers weren't pushy, but began to tell us about the amount of children right in our own city that are waiting for 'forever homes,' or adoptive homes.  There are many reasons why children end up in Foster Care, and it's not their fault.  We learned that they've often been removed from a cycle of generational poverty, placed in a foster home for hopes of their parents turning their life in a positive direction or moving to a permanent family.

Now, there are all kinds of perspectives, positives and negatives to a foster care system like the one we are part of.  We truly sensed a calling as we moved through these classes, but that doesn't mean we think the system is perfect.  Any local church is the same; not perfect.  But we felt we should still take part.

Web-friend Randy Bohlender, adoption-master-due-to-experience-and-owning-an-adoption-agency, mentions that "pre-vention is better than post-vention." This is a good statement.  It is possible that some day the foster care system will be replaced by a demand and quality of adoption that eclipses the amount of children and attracts the desires of struggling birth parents to immediately think of adoption as the best option.  This is actually something I pray for regularly.  May the church step up someday.

I am rambling...my apologies.  There's a lot to cover.

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Moving on...

A quick search on the SNAP website (Special Needs Adoption Program) reveals 144 children ready for a permanent home in Kentucky...those are only the ones who've been waiting in the system long enough to get their own webpage.  A child from the foster care system if often considered "Special Needs" because of the emotional trauma that happens when being removed from a home.

In our classes I learned that I don't have to go to China to adopt a child (please do if that's what you're called to!).  I could impact my own neighborhood.  Not only that, if we didn't adopt, at a minimum I could help a local family that is either broken or struggling by loving their children while they figure out what to do (and possibly help encourage them in that process).

What we began to learn about was called "concurrent planning" - being a foster parent who is also able and willing to adopt the children that come into their home.  By taking this focus for our care, children that come into our home would be most likely finding a forever home other than their birth family because of many reasons; and by placing the child in a concurrent planning home, there is most likely less disruption in the child's life.


*If you are interested in becoming a foster parent or an adoptive parent in Northern Kentucky or anywhere else, feel free to email me.  I can connect you with resources and good folks to get you started.


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