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May 24, 2019

Celebrating National Foster Care Month Through the Stories of Florida Teens

Imagine being a young girl adopted into a family with the renewed promise of hope, only to face abuse by your new caretakers. Then, at 16, a new foster parent drops you off at your therapist’s office—and never comes back.

That’s the story of Amiracle. She exemplifies a large and ongoing problem in Florida—thousands of teens living in foster care, bouncing between homes, sometimes up to seven days a week.

May is National Foster Care Month, and there are thousands of teens like Amiracle wavering between childhood and adulthood, without a solid foundational home to ground them. Family First is honoring foster families as well as those who work with foster children, in an effort to raise additional awareness to the need for more loving homes for the oft-overlooked children of our state.

Good intentions notwithstanding, child welfare agencies cannot find enough foster families to meet the growing demand. The numbers are simply staggering – one in 17 American kids will enter foster care at some point, and, on average, foster children remain in state care for nearly two years, though 6 percent have languished there for five or more years.

Family First partnered with the Florida Youth Leadership Academy to help teens in foster care share their story. These teens chose to create a video where they could be most vulnerable and honest – a poignant reflection of the years of life they have experienced despite their age – to bring awareness to the many kids in foster care and the need for loving homes. The teens in the video, including Amiracle, created the concept, drafted the script that Family First then recorded, edited and produced.

The video not only served as the students’ year-end project but is now airing as both a: 15 and: 30 second PSA statewide in Florida and is a resource for organizations hoping to encourage and engage more foster families.

It is Family First’s vision for every child to know the love of a mom and a dad. That’s why Family First has partnered with state child welfare agencies like in Florida, Indiana and South Carolina to provide resources for families to learn more about foster care and adoption. To learn more about fostering or adoption, visit www.allprodad.com/onemore.

These students, with the help of Family First, hope that sharing their stories will mean more foster families will be opening their doors for children like them in Florida and around the country.

 

About Family First

Family First is a national nonprofit organization that provides practical parenting and marriage advice and resources to help families love well. Through emails, web resources, school programs, father-kid events, books and more, Family First serves more than 5 million people daily. The nonprofit has two main programs to engage families: All Pro Dad, its fatherhood program; and iMOM, a resource for moms. Additionally, Family First’s founder hosts the Family Minute with Mark Merrill, providing short stories and advice for families to love and live well together.

About The Florida Department Of Children And Families

The Florida Department of Children and Families works in partnership with local communities to protect the vulnerable, promote strong and economically self-sufficient families, and advance personal and family recovery and resiliency.

About The South Carolina Department Of Social Services

The Department’s mission is to serve South Carolina by promoting the safety, permanency and well-being of children and vulnerable adults, helping individuals achieve stability and strengthening families.

About Indiana Department of Child Services

The Indiana Department of Child Services engages with families and collaborates with state, local and community partners to protect children from abuse and neglect and to provide child support services.

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