Children who need foster care are all ages, from birth to 21 years of age. They come from various backgrounds and types of families. They may be part of sibling groups of two, three, four or more. Most of them are school aged, although some are younger.
Various people bring children to the attention of Child Protective Services. Physicians, nurses, educators, clergy, social workers and law enforcement are among those required by law to report any situation where they reasonably suspect a child is being abused, neglected or endangered. Friends, neighbors or relatives also may report suspicions or concerns that children are not being cared for adequately.
Some children in care were exposed to drugs and alcohol before birth. Most have been neglected or emotionally, sexually, or physically abused. Due to their traumatic experiences they may have special physical, mental, emotional or behavioral needs. Some may have challenging behaviors when they come into foster care because they are angry, frightened, confused and insecure about what is happening to them.
Through no fault of their own, these children often have various special needs and challenges as a result of their past experiences and the current disruption in their lives. But these children and youth can learn and adapt. With the influence of positive role models, time, caring adults and stability, these youth can grow and thrive. You can make the difference!