Did you know that kids in foster care have PTSD at a higher rate than veterans? They also have a higher rate of teen pregnancies, increased possibility of experiencing homelessness in their life, increased risk for substance abuse, higher numbers of their own children entering foster care, increased risk of incarceration…and the list goes on and on. The first time I started looking into the data and statistics I was sad, overwhelmed with the feeling of hopelessness, and frustrated by what I saw. I gave myself permission to feel all these things and then I moved to the “what now?”.
As I have read studies, looked at stats, and put myself in situations to learn from others in the field, one thing continues to rise to the top as a game changer for these kids. It’s something that no amount of money can solve because it’s something that comes free yet it requires sacrificial giving from those who are willing. What is it?
Connection can take on many faces. Sometimes it is the teacher that goes the extra mile to point out what makes a child special. It could be the foster or adoptive parents who open their homes and hearts or the mentor coach, or friend that says I am here through the thick and thin. Connection has a way of letting you know you belong and that you matter. It’s value is hard to truly measure but, we all know it’s power. Reclaiming the future for kids in foster care cannot happen without community connections.
Foster Arizona exists to make connecting easier. We educate, empower, and encourage Arizonans to positively impact the lives of kids in foster care because we have seen that it is at those moments of impact that lives are truly changed–everyone’s lives are changed, not just the child’s. It is one life at a time because every child matters. Through our videos, blog, Kid Connection Events, and Community Events, we have been able to reach over 100,000 people in 2017 with the message that these kids matter and that we all must play a part in securing their future.
Creating this kind of awareness and opportunities for connection takes resources from wonderful community members, corporate partners, and friends of Foster Arizona. If you believe in the power of connection to reclaim the future for kids in foster care, we ask that you would consider partnering with us on November 18, 2017 at our Discovering Hope: Reclaiming Their Future event. Individual or group tickets are available online for $150 per ticket at https://fosterarizona.org/events-page/ and sponsorship packages are still available through November 3rd by emailing Kim@fosteraz.com.
Together, we have and will continue to make an impact so that kids know that their community cares and that they will not have to go through life alone.
Founder/CEO Foster Arizona