My husband and I recently hosted an event in our home with the State Department of Children and Families. We invited couples who had expressed an interest in adopting or fostering, as well as couples experienced with the system who could offer their advice and perspective.
We were happy to do this. And while we viewed the event as important, we did not expect it to make front-page news. But it did.
For one, it was the first event of its kind in Connecticut. I can honestly say, I had no idea no one had ever offered to open their home to bring awareness to the need for foster families and the needs of foster children. It seemed like the natural thing to do.
I initially made contact with DCF to inquire about hosting foster children for Thanksgiving. Through this contact, my awareness of the need grew.
Unfortunately, for many of us, fostering is something other people do–for no other reason than it just hasn’t broken through as the norm. It hasn’t been demystified.
As a result, foster children and families tend to be a marginalized population that rarely gets the notice or attention they need.
But that’s precisely why Scripture advises us to help orphans in their distress like these foster children (James 1:17).
A reporter stopped by our small event to inquire as to why we would do such a thing. He asked the questions that many in the community might ask: “Why do we care?” and “What is a foster child?” and “Where are they now?”
Here’s The Lowdown
We care because God tells us to care. We were orphans once too. God adopted us into His family through the death and resurrection of His very own Son, Jesus. When we accept Jesus, we are reconciled with our Creator for eternity.
Foster children are either neglected or abused by their biological parents and must be removed for their welfare, most often at a moment’s notice. These precious children can range in age from days old to teenagers. Many are hoping to find forever families who will adopt them and provide care and love they just did not receive from their own mothers and fathers.
Foster families provide temporary homes for these at-risk children. Our state, as well as yours, needs many more families who will provide safe, stable and loving abodes for these most vulnerable kids. The need is so dire, some children move from foster home to foster home, feeling the sting of rejection and instability each time.
How You Can Help
As a result of our experience, we want to encourage others to host in-home awareness events. You can do so by contacting the government department that runs the foster care program in your state. Feel free to reference this article.
In addition, Fruits of Faith has begun a ministry called “Operation Love Pack.” We seek to provide each foster child entering the foster system with a rolling suitcase in which they can put their belongings. Most children are removed from the only home they have ever known without time to prepare. Many enter their temporary home with only a plastic garbage bag in which to transport their things.
We can help care for these precious children in their distress by giving them a respectable suitcase to pack their most important items. In so doing, we let them know God cares about them; God loves them, and is sending His agents to provide for their needs.
Please read more about what we provide in each Love Pack: http://fruitsoffaithministries.com/operation-love-packs/
Also, if you are moved to contribute, please consider giving to our Go Fund Me campaign: http://www.gofundme.com/operation-love-pack/