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What's New at KidsPeace

News and Notes from KidsPeace

KidsPeace and Arrow Host Recognition and Awareness Event

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 CELEBRATION HONORS NATIONAL FOSTER CARE MONTH

 

 

KidsPeace FCCP office in Duncansville, PA, joined with Arrow Child & Family Ministries of Hollidaysburg to honor area foster and adoptive families at a recognition banquet May 20th from 6- 9 p.m. at The Casino at Lakemont Park in Altoona.

        

Thanks to a generous grant from the Adoption Coalition of the State of PA, Department of Public Welfare, a total of 125 adults attended the event and enjoyed a wonderful meal and informative presentations.

The event included a dinner and awards followed by a panel discussion featuring:  Mark Tennant, Founder/CEO, Arrow Child & Family Ministries; Maryanne Burger, Administrator, Blair Country Children, Youth & Family; Kim Walkingshaw, Statewide Adoption Network (SWAN); President Judge Jolene Grubb Kopriva; Paul and Maribeth Mills, KidsPeace Resource Family; Troy and Jodie Campbell, Arrow Ambassador Family.

        

“This event was be an excellent way to show how valued these families are and to amplify the need for more families to come forward to care for children in need of foster care or adoption,” said Melinda Shea, Program Director, Arrow Child & Family Ministries. 

According to KidsPeace Program Manager Tammi Yeckley, speakers included KidsPeace and Arrow Child &  Family Ministries Staff, Judge Jolene Kopriva, Director of Blair County  Children, Youth & Families, Maryanne Burger, Kim Walkingshaw from SWAN (Statewide Adoption and Permanency Network). Other attendants included several Blair CYS Supervisors and caseworkers, representatives from Bedford Bounty CYS, a couple of Guardian ad litem attorneys, and many foster and/ or adoptive families, as well as families interested in beginning the process of becoming foster or adoptive parents. The local YMCA provided child care service for all of the foster/adoptive families’ children.

Gift baskets and certificates were provided to all attending and active resource families; CYS caseworker awards were also given to those that were nominated. Food was excellent and feedback we have received thus far has been really wonderful.   

        

The evening also included “Heart Gallery,” featuring a video and photo gallery of Pennsylvania children who are available for adoption.  The event is funded through a grant from the Adoption Coalition of the State of PA, Department of Public Welfare.

For more information on how to become a foster or adoptive parent in Pennsylvania, please call KidsPeace at 888-336-7708.

 

 

KidsPeace Foster Parents Share Thoughts

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In honor of National Foster Care Month, the KidsPeace Raleigh, NC, Foster Care and Community Programs office is celebrating the work that our families are doing with the children/teens placed in their homes. Families enter a weekly drawing to win a gift card by answering a “Question of the Week.” We thought that sharing their thoughts with you would help us honor them further and display how the work they do daily is giving hope, help and healing to our children, families and communities. A few of the responses appear below:

Question of the Week for May 3rd:

What do you see as your main strength as a Foster Parent?

I am very passionate about young people and often have difficulty defining what many may consider my "strength" as a Foster Parent. I will say that I always meet the youth where they are with respect to assuring them that regardless of their circumstances that we can work together to find viable solutions and identify the appropriate resources to assist them with moving forward. I believe in empowering youth and equipping them with skills and processes to achieve goals and master accomplishments. I am a good listener and I only offer solutions when prompted by the individual. I strive to provide opportunities wherein youth can utilize their abilities to problem solve and create positive outcomes with limited assistance from adults. This process creates strengthened self-esteem and a new-found awareness of how to deal with adversities and challenges. Youth are our most valuable asset, and the process by which we lend our talents, skills and experiences as adults helps prepare them for this journey called life. There is no blueprint for being a foster parent, but there are definitely best practices...and they seem to work for me. Evelyn S.

 

Question of the Week for May 10th:

Tell us about a special memory that you have of a child placed in your home (past or present).

 

The first thing I thought of when I read this question was Christmas morning 2008 with S.J. We were at my sister’s house and all my family was there. S. was sitting on the couch beside me not expecting any gifts since we had celebrated our family Christmas before going to my sister’s home in Virginia.  I will never forget the look on her face when she got her first gift from one of my sisters, she almost cried. I don’t think she could understand how complete strangers could accept her and treat her like one of the family so easily. It was wonderful and she had a great day. Sandy C.

 

A special memory of a child that was placed in my home is when this child took the time to say thank you for all that you are doing for me. She acknowledged the fact that, although her biological parents were not there for her, she still had a chance. She said to me she felt as though she has a chance as long as she keeps in touch with her foster family. Theresa S.

 

 

KidsPeace Recognizes Foster Care Community During Foster Care Month

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May is Foster Care Month, a time to say "Thank you" to foster families and staff member who place children in safe, supportive foster homes. KidsPeace has foster care offices across the country that specialize in placing regular and treatment foster care children with well trained, well matched families who provide wonderful care and positive environments to children from all backgrounds. 

"We show our appreciation to our dedicated foster parents throughout the year, but, in May, we try to reach out and thank these families with special events, picnics, dinners and individual recognition of all that they do," says KidsPeace Executive Director of Foster Care and Community Programs Ray Culp. "It takes very special people to open their hearts and homes to children who have been separated from their families and need adults to give them structure and guidance during a very difficult time in their lives."

Foster families provide homes for children who are stepping down from residential treatment facilities, have been removed from their homes because of abuse, neglect or emotional, mental or physical issues that cannot be addressed in their homes. They often require many types of treatment and counseling outside the foster home, and foster parents spend many hours driving them to appointments, participating in counseling sessions and taking them to visit family members. It is not an easy job, and many children take a long time to adjust and learn to trust their foster families.

There is a growing number of older children and teens who need foster homes, and these kids who need the care the most are often the hardest to place. These children need assistance learning independent living skills, planning their educations, or finding employment after they have graduated. KidsPeace assists foster children prepare for the future and stresses the importance of education and training.

KidsPeace foster care offices actively recruit foster parents through a variety of media and then carefully screen these volunteers and provide extensive training to help them care for the children who will live in their homes. Our associates are available 24/7 to assist foster families and children with any questions, issues or services that may be needed.

During this special awareness month, KidsPeace Foster Care encourages adults who are over 21, have flexible schedules, can provide privacy and supervision, have a means of support, have room in their homes and hearts and a means of transportation to contact us to learn more about becoming a foster parent. Call 866-454-3773 for more information or visit the foster care page on this site.

We thank the hundreds of foster parents who provide love and support to our foster children and acknowledge the hard work and loving care they give our children and teens every day.

 
   
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