FOSTER FAMILY WEEK
October 19-25, 2008
During Foster Family Week (October 19th to October 25th), The Children’s Aid Society of Haldimand & Norfolk recognizes families who give of their time and themselves by nurturing vulnerable children and youth as foster parents.
On October 22, 2008 the Children’s Aid Society of Haldimand & Norfolk is honouring our foster parents through a special Foster Parent Dinner. On this evening, we will be expressing our gratitude to all our families who make personal sacrifices to provide safe homes to children in need from our communities. Haldimand and Norfolk CAS will also be recognizing the work of foster parents who have reached five and ten year service milestones.
Foster families provide a precious gift to children in care. They share their love, their home and their family with our most vulnerable children. Foster Family Week is a good time to recognize those caring families who open their homes and their hearts to children who have suffered maltreatment and need a stable, loving home.
Last year, 38% of children in the care of Haldimand and Norfolk were placed with a foster family while 11% were placed in group homes, 2% with adoptive families, 10% with kinship families and 28% were living on their own. With 119 foster families in Haldimand and Norfolk, there are still not enough homes available to provide temporary shelter to all the children coming into care who cannot remain with their families.
More foster families who can provide safe, loving, secure homes to the vulnerable children who come into the care of The Children’s Aid Society of Haldimand and Norfolk are needed. There is a greater need for foster families for teenagers, as 43% of all youth in care aged 13 to 15 years are in a foster family setting as opposed to group care or living on their own. There is still a need for foster families for younger children and sibling groups, as well as families from diverse backgrounds and ethno-cultural communities.
Fostering brings caring and compassionate people and the kids who need them together. Fostering is a rewarding experience, a chance to make a difference one child at a time. We need more extraordinary people to consider becoming foster parents, to be a safe harbour to children and youth in need.
The Children’s Aid Society of Haldimand and Norfolk works very hard to help children remain with their families. Last year, more than 2, 608 families received child welfare services and parenting supports from Haldimand & Norfolk CAS to overcome difficulties.
When children cannot remain at home because of serious concerns about their safety and protection, they come into the care of a child welfare agency that makes every effort to give a family and a home to every child in need of protection. Last year, The Children’s Aid Society of Haldimand and Norfolk provided substitute care for 303 children and foster parents cared for 115 children and youth.
Foster parents work with Haldimand & Norfolk CAS as part of a team to develop a plan to care for each child, which includes reunification with their family, adoption or long-term foster care. They work closely with Haldimand & Norfolk CAS to provide temporary care to children for a few days, a week, several months or possibly years. Haldimand & Norfolk CAS support foster families through assessment, training and education, ongoing assistance as well as financial supports for the child’s care, food and clothing.
If you are considering fostering, please contact Haldimand & Norfolk CAS for more information at 1-888-CAS-KIDS.