Foster parents, families needed in Central Texas
WACO, Texas (KWTX) - There is always a need for foster families, and that need has not changed because of the pandemic. What has changed is how the state is reaching out to families.
Catie Hammond, foster adopt development supervisor for the Department of Family and Protective Services, said the department has really had to change its methods. Normally, Hammond said she and others are out in the community around people who are interested in fostering.
Now, DFPS has started holding virtual information sessions. Hammond said interest in these meetings has almost doubled during the pandemic, likely because people don’t have the time or travel constraints.
Hammond said the meetings go over how fostering a child works, and what is needed to address the needs each child may have, especially if they’ve gone through a traumatic situation.
Hammond added putting children in a foster family is their best option, if relatives aren’t available.
“We do need those foster families,” Hammond said. “If we can’t find them, then children end up in settings that are not family like, or not the least restrictive, which is what we always aim for.”
Mark Wilson, media relations specialist for DFPS Region 7, said it is important there are as many foster families available as possible because they try and find the right fit for each child.
Even if they have as many foster families as children in need, the homes available may not be the best environment.
“It’s hard to kind of project where we’re going to be on any given day,” Wilson said. “And so we always want to make sure we’re in the best position to provide the right kinds of homes and families for these kiddos.”
If people are interested in becoming a foster parent, they can register online for the interest meetings. Signing up to attend the meeting does not mean you have to become a foster parent; it is just a chance to learn more about the process.
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