More than 513,000 American children are in foster care because their own families are in crisis and unable to provide for their essential well-being. Like all young people, youth in the foster care system deserve and benefit from enduring, positive relationships with caring adults. Now is the time to get involved.
This May, National Foster Care Month serves as a platform for connecting more of these vulnerable children with concerned, nurturing adults. No matter how much time you have to give, you have the power to do something positive that will "Change a Lifetime" for a young person in foster care.
Many of these formerly abused or neglected children and teens will reunite safely with their parents, be cared for by relatives or be adopted by loving families. But others are less fortunate. No matter their age, all young people in foster care need a meaningful connection to a caring and trustworthy adult who becomes a supportive and lasting presence in their lives.
Across the nation and here in Allen County, amazing people are helping children build brighter futures by serving as foster parents, relative caregivers, mentors, advocates, social workers and volunteers. But much more help is needed. The imparting of hope is the best investment one can make in a child's life.
This month, we call on and challenge all area residents to do something positive for young people in their own community. For information on how you can help, call Allen County Children Services at 419-227-8590. You can change a child's life for a lifetime. Become a foster parent today.
Dennis M. Ward, pastor of Second Baptist Church, is a board member of Allen County Children Services.