When children are removed from the home they grew up in, the next place they land will have a lasting impact on their lives.

Foster parents accept children who can no longer live with their birth families due to a number of reasons.
A man I know spent a few years in foster care as a child and he still remembers the family who took him and his brother in when they had nowhere else to go.
Today, he attributes much of his character to the way the couple accepted them lovingly and taught them how to be responsible and accountable. While he only spent a few years with his foster family, 30 years later he still recalls the memory with thankfulness and gratitude for their choice to become foster parents.

After a few years in foster care, he and his brother were adopted.

During the month of May, the entire country celebrates National Foster Care Month to thank those selfless individuals who open their homes and hearts to children of unfortunate circumstances, related caregivers, social workers, mentors and volunteers in the system.

These people give children who may otherwise be left behind a chance at a new life, one in which they have the same opportunity as other children.

A strong family unit is the foundation children build the rest of their lives on. When they start out with a shaky foundation, they need people who will bring stability into their lives.

There are approximately 463,000 children across the nation in foster care and 9,773 in Arizona.

In the Verde Valley, there are over 80 children who live with a foster family and more licensed foster homes are needed.

Foster parenting isn’t easy. The children in the system can come with deep-rooted problems related to the early years of their lives while others will adapt easier. Whatever the situation, all children need and deserve a safe place to grow up where they find food on the table in the evening, a guiding support structure and the opportunity to be a kid.

We salute those individuals who choose to bring foster children into their homes. They may never know the difference they’ll make in the lives of those children.