Just a Heart and a Home
May 2022 · Forward in Hope, Foster & Kinship Care
If you’ve followed Saint Francis Ministries’ social media activity at all this month, you may have noticed several stories about foster and kinship parents. They form the foundation of everything we do here – providing healing and hope to children and families. So, during Foster Care Month, we like to share their stories, as well as their thoughts about how fostering has changed their lives. And it does change lives.
We’ve seen families grow closer, children grow in empathy and understanding, and adult partners develop deeper, more supportive relationships. And that’s just the foster family. We’ve also seen children in foster care who – with structure, guidance, and love – go on to build successful lives of wholeness and purpose.
There is no such thing as a perfect parent. So, we can’t expect foster parents to be perfect. But that doesn’t mean they can’t make a lasting, positive difference in the life of a child. We say it often (because it’s true), but we just need foster parents with compassion and understanding who will do everything in their power to protect, guide, nurture, and advocate for the children in their care. That’s the crux of it.
More than 400,000 children in the United States live in out-of-home placement (Children’s Bureau), which means the need for good foster parents is both urgent and ongoing. As Nelson Mandela said, “There can be no keener revelation of a society’s soul than the way in which it treats its children.” This quote bears even more weight in light of recent events, but it ultimately boils down to the same question: “Who will step forward to protect and defend the children?” It doesn’t take much to be a hero – just a heart and a home.