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Latest News Tag: Foster Care

June 14, 2017

My First Father’s Day as a Foster Dad

The-Gobena-Story

I remember the first time I saw my girls. I had butterflies in my stomach. At first it was a picture on my Iphone. Then I remember walking into the agency and I saw them through the window blinds. The youngest had long (and I mean long!) black pigtails and sat next her birth mom quietly. The oldest was energetic and busy. We met our first two foster daughters that day in March 2012. Before we met them, we talked with their birth mother. She was concerned because she knew we didn’t have kids and thought maybe we just wanted to steal hers. She was also concerned we were the sixth home the girls were going to in less than a year. Both April and I made it clear why we were foster parents. We were there to support both her and the children. April graciously let her know that we would probably … Continue reading

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May 31, 2017

15 Ways to Be a Foster Care Friendly Church

foster-friendly-church

Foster kids need the church. Foster families need the church. At the close of National Foster Care Month, here are 15 ways to be a foster care friendly church– Teach Educate, educate, educate. Host informational meetings for would-be foster parents, but also for members of the church family who simply want to learn more about foster care. Add foster care discussion to existing (paid/volunteer) staff training. Many children who come from hard places have unique challenges and behaviors that require extra love and patience from those in authority. Host foster care licensing opportunities on campus. Open these classes to church families and members of the community. Not only is this decision helpful to the local foster care agency, but it sends a clear signal to foster families that your church will support their efforts to foster. Provide Organize meal trains for new placements. If your church family provides meals to new moms, be sure to include foster parents … Continue reading

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May 26, 2017

Netflix’s Anne with an E, Reviewed

Anne with an E

While critics are divided over the new “Anne of Green Gables,” one thing is certain– Anne with an E is darker and grittier than previous adaptations of the 1908 novel by Lucy Maud Montgomery. That said, I’m not ready to give up on the series. Here are a few personal observations after watching the first episode. Parental Cautions Good news: The first episode steers clear of vulgar language and sexual content. Watching this episode as a family is no problem from this perspective. Caution: Anne is occasionally haunted by brief-but-instense flashbacks of physical abuse from her previous homes (including a bullying scene with her peers and a scene where her foster dad beats her over a tree stump and then collapses to his death). If you watch this episode with young children or someone who was fostered, orphaned, or adopted, the flashbacks could trigger hard questions or memories. Critics suggest the show is best suited for … Continue reading

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May 24, 2017

Carried by God: National Foster Care Month

national-fostercare-month

May is National Foster Care Month. Last year The Forgotten Initiative (TFI), Lifesong for Orphans’ foster care ministry, started something new with the launch of The Forgotten Podcast. Their goal with every episode is to bring voice to the foster care community. Jami Kaeb, Founder and Executive Director of TFI, has the honor of interviewing individuals who minister to the foster care community, serve on the front lines, or who have spent time in foster care as a child, like Nicole Argo. Nicole’s story At age seven, Nicole witnessed her mom being severely abused by a boyfriend. At this tender age, she already felt exhausted from life. In that moment, she wanted it to be over because she didn’t want to hurt anymore. She sat on the ledge of an open window in her apartment, dangling her feet outside. She remembers hearing God’s voice–even before knowing who God was–saying to … Continue reading

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May 10, 2017

5 Quick Thoughts for the Weary

5-thoughts-for-the-weary

In the midst of another long week? Here are 5 quick thoughts to consider when you are weary– 1. God delights to use dust. “God loves to take the dust of our shattered places and do something miraculous with it.” –Lysa TerKeurst, Proverbs 31 Ministries 2. God desires to draw you close. “Stay close to the heart of the Father; that is what the world needs most from you.” –Jedd Medefind, author and president of Christian Alliance for Orphans 3. God loves you perfectly. “Christ’s love compels us. It is inexhaustible.” –Steven Curtis Chapman, singer, song writer, and founder of Show Hope 4. God is enough.  “Do not make yourself the center of your story. Let others see Jesus at the center.” — Peter Greer, president and CEO of HOPE International 5. God gives grace. “But he said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore I will … Continue reading

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May 3, 2017

17 Things to Pray for the Fatherless

pray for the fatherless

It must grieve the heart of God that the line of fatherless children world-wide is 30,000 miles long. Truth be told, God’s heart would be broken if there were only 1 orphaned child in the world. So here is how we can pray for the fatherless who are already close to His heart– 1. Lonely children. Ask God to comfort, protect, and provide for children who feel forgotten. 2. At-risk homes. Ask God to supply mentors and resources for families in crisis. 3. Foster children. Ask God to comfort the hundreds of children who will enter foster care today. Every two minutes a child enters the system. 4. Aging-out youth. Ask God to protect and provide for youth in foster care, specifically young adults preparing to age out of child welfare. Ask God to provide families committed to love and welcome them. 5. Willing parents. Ask God to raise up new foster and adopting families willing to stand in the gap. 6. … Continue reading

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April 26, 2017

Life Touching Life: How to Create a Culture of Commitment

life-touching-life

The statistics are sobering. 75% of foster parents no longer foster after their first placement, and as many as 1 out of 4 adoptions dissolve or disrupt. Fostering and adopting is hard work, plain and simply. But our relational God made us to be relational, and created a way for families to be encouraged while doing the hard, daily work of loving the fatherless and vulnerable. His solution?–the Church. When a church family wholeheartedly commits to its fostering and adoptive families for the long haul, children are best positioned to succeed. But it often begins with an organized, committed adoption/foster care ministry within the church. Here are 3 specific guidelines for creating a culture of commitment in your adoption/foster care ministry– 1. Connect. Foster and adoptive parents cannot thrive in isolation. Goal: Create an environment where families feel connected–connected to the adoption/foster care ministry, yes, but more importantly, connected to each other. The only thing that grows well in the dark … Continue reading

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