Foster parents share journey for National Awareness Month

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WACO, Texas – May is National Foster Care Month – and according to the Children’s Bureau, more than 400,000 children are in foster care.

“We really felt a burden from being Christians. That there was an aspect of taking care of orphans, and taking care of those little kids who are in need,” Drew Humphrey said.

This is one of the reasons Drew and Holly Humphrey are passionate about fostering children.

Since becoming foster parents almost two years ago, they have had four children – three are currently living with them.

“It’s a difficult task to take, but the children that are being removed from their homes are more scared than you,” Drew said.

Children in foster care range from newborns to 20-year-olds. Many of them are removed from their biological parents for various reasons – such as neglect, sexual abuse and parental drug abuse.

There are requirements to becoming foster parents, as well.

“We filled out a lot of paperwork, and definitely a background check,” Holly said. “Making sure that our home was in order. To be a safe place for children, and then going through trainings.”

The Humphreys say the number one goal is for children to return to their biological parents or family. According to the Children’s Bureau foster care statistics, only 50 percent are reunited with parents or family. Some stay in foster homes or are adopted by foster families, but each option requires a court process.

“We really view these kiddos like they are our own,” Drew said. “Even if they are not here forever.”

The Humphreys say when becoming a foster parent, it is important to be surrounded by community that can support you.

The month of May is used to acknowledge foster parents, and all the members of the community who help children and youth.

While being a foster parent has it challenges, the Humphreys feel called to this assignment.

“That’s been a big priority for us. To be able to help encourage people to {you can do this!},” Drew said. “It’s possible to do it no matter how scared you are, or how under-equipped you feel. There are so many kids that literally have nowhere to go – and so, we must step up and meet this need.”

The Children’s Bureau is hosting a virtual event Thursday, which is highlighting how the welfare system can support families in foster care. To learn more, you can visit their website Child Welfare.

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