When is National Foster Care Day?
The first Tuesday in May is National Foster Care Day.
What is National Foster Care Day?
Family is forever. At least, that’s true for many of us. Kids in foster care don’t always find a forever family though. National Foster Care Day supports foster children and broadcasts the need for more resources, volunteers, and parents.
Foster care is supposed to be temporary. The goals is to get kids back with their birth families. The next best route is adoption or care from extended families. It’s more expensive to keep children in foster care than for them to land in a permanent, loving home. The system is riddled with financial and personnel shortages though.
The stakes are high. Studies show that rates of homelessness, imprisonment, and unemployment are higher among kids who age out of foster care without finding a permanent family. These children are also twice as prone to PTSD as military veterans.
There aren’t enough foster parents. The stipends are lower than they should be. Not enough people know the facts. So, National Foster Care Day invites us to learn about the system and to advocate for kids in foster care.
Facts about National Foster Care Day!
Almost 440,000 kids inhabit foster care on any given day. In 2016 alone, 687,000 kids spent time in state care.
Though the average tenure is 2 years, 6% of kids hang in the foster system longer than 5 years.
The average age of a child entering foster care is 7 years old.
Group homes and institutions house about 12% of the children in foster care.
How to celebrate National Foster Care Day:
Wear blue to get the word out.
Become a foster parent. If you’re resistant to the idea, research common myths about the foster system and kids in state care. See if a little research can conquer your objections.
Adopt one of the 100,000 American children who desperately need a forever home.
Volunteer as a Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA). These folks represent the best interests of kids who suffer from abuse and neglect.
What’s the hashtag for National Foster Care Day?
Use #FosterCareBlue and #NationalFosterCareDay on social media to support kids in foster care.