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 Adoption & Foster Care


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Every Child Deserves a Loving Family

Every child deserves a loving family to nurture and support that child to his or her full potential. Will your church help a child in foster care find a family?
 
Los Angeles County has 21,000 children in foster care, the most in the country. And right now, DCFS faces a shortage of foster parents. They especially need emergency foster parents who can care for a child up to 30 days, especially for infants under the age of 2, sibling groups, and older foster youth.

As  youth age out of foster care without a family, 30% will become homeless and 20% will be incarcerated, with 70% of trafficked youth coming from the foster care system. Just 4% go to college. These young people need the security and stability of a family to help them succeed in school and in life.
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You can help. By helping a child find a loving foster or adoptive family, you are investing in the life of that child and helping him or her have a better future!

Prayer
​Invite your parish to pray for youth in foster care. Pray that loving families would step up to welcome these children into their homes. Pray for openness in the parish to fostering and adoption.
Organize a Holy Hour for Life​ with the intention of praying for more foster/adoptive families

Education

Throw a Foster Fair!
Step 1. Bring the Heart Gallery to Your Parish
The Heart Gallery is a collection of beautiful life-size portraits of children waiting for adoption.  To request the Heart Gallery display at your parish, call Stephanie Clancy at 909-802-1411 or email clancs@dcfs.lacounty.gov 
 
Step 2. Invite Organizations to Present and Speak
Some organizations that we love who will bring materials and whom you should promote at your event:

Step 3. Print our Flyers to Share
We have made beautiful flyers highlighting ways families can support children in foster care!
 
Advocacy

Educate Your Parish on Foster and Adoption
The Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS) has regular orientations and expos to help prospective families begin the process to foster or adopt. For more information, call 
1-888-811-1121

Join the Catholic Legislative Network

Sign up for the Catholic Legislative Network's email alerts so you can raise your voice for the life and dignity of the human person in the California legislature. Host a registration day at your parish and sign up parishioners to receive emails as well.
 
Service

Host a Foster Matching Event
Host a small event where prospective families and waiting children can do activities together and get to know each other in a comfortable and child-friendly setting. DCFS can provide activities and refreshments, and can arrange for the supervision and transportation of the children. This event can help families already interested to move forward with the homestudy and training.
 
Host a Clothing Drive
Parishes love to pitch in for clothing drives! Host a clothing drive at your parish and donate the collected items to a foster closet supporting foster families like James Storehouse in Ventura County or the Love Gives Foster Closet in LA County. ​​​​​​​​​​​​

FAQ’s for Families Considering Fostering/Adopting:
What if our families can’t adequately care for an older child? 
Your families can request the age that they are equipped to care for! DCFS has told us that they desperately need foster parents, and there is a special need to place infants under the age of 2 with a family.
 
What if our families can’t handle a long-term commitment to a child? 
They can become emergency foster parents. These foster parents care for children for 30 days or less, until a more permanent home like a relative or a long-term foster family is found. 
 
What if someone wants to help but doesn’t feel called to be a foster parent? 
Not everyone can become a foster parent. But everyone can help a child in foster care. During your foster fair, you can talk about the many opportunities at your parish:  becoming a CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocate) for a child in the dependency court system, mentoring a child, or driving a child to church through Covenants for Kids. Check out our flyer for more ideas!
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