I write a lot about helping the orphans, advocating for adoption, and for kids being trafficked. This is not the only thing that weighs heavy on my heart though. There are over 500,000 kids in the US foster care system on any given day.
Can you absorb that number and put faces to it?
So many faces, faces of all shapes, sizes, color……
For many of these children, they have been placed into care abruptly and without any belongings. When we were foster parents, our very first placement came to us with one plastic walmart sack and a few odd bits of clothes. Nothing else. They were a sibling group, and I remember the little one not having a special teddy bear, they didn’t have their favorite shirt, nothing but a plastic sack of weather inappropriate clothes.
Do you feel the urge to help those who are fatherless? Even temporarily fatherless, but you feel called to help the ones local to where you live?
There is something you can do! Something that could help preserve the dignity of a child, help make transition just a bit easier, help provide a bit of comfort. Foster care agencies are always in need of backpacks/duffel bags/small suitcases filled with necessities. It is quite common for kids to be moved in a rush, and often times, they do not get or have much to take with them. They are dropped off into a foster parent’s care at any hour of day or night, with not much to use up front.
What you can do:
*All items must be new. Make 6-8 duffel bags per participant (or whatever you can do).
- Duffel bag
- Towel, washcloth
- Toothpaste, toothbrush
- Shampoo and soap
- Deodorant for pre-teens and teens
- Hairbrush, comb, hair ties for girls
- Fleece blanket
- Pencils, pens, markers
- Journals or notebooks
- Flashlight and batteries
- Small toy or NEW stuffed animal
- Hats , mittens or scarves
- Homemade label with gender and age
Drop them off to your local child protective services, they will most definitely be well received.
For a lot of orphans, it is “normal” to be in an orphanage or to be an orphan (unfortunately), but for the kids in foster care, they often know their parents and that they supposed to be in the care of their mom and dad. It’s a tough change to be placed into a strangers home, I’m sure that having something of their own (even if it’s new) would be helpful.