The primary goal of foster care is safe family reunification, which unfortunately, many people seem to find difficult to accept. The Child Welfare Information Gateway (a government website), states that 3 out of every 5 children in foster care are reunified with family. With this truth in mind, we want to dispel some myths about reunification.
Working Towards Reunification
We always need to remember that no two cases, no two children, and no two families are the same, each one has a different story. Reunification doesn’t occur 100% of the time, but reunification is the primary objective, until a judge terminates parental rights.
Almost always the best choice is to keep a child with a parent. Knowledge on parenting and child development is constantly expanding. Usually, many of our parenting skills are learnt from the way we were raised, sometimes not in the best of environments. Methods of raising a child come down through the generations. Some things may change, while others stay the same. Each family has their own idea of “normal” and “safe,” and each family deserves the opportunity to work through problems in order to maintain the family unit.
Reunification for the Entire Family
We often only think about the immediate family when we consider foster care. The main attention is on the child and the birth parents affected, but what about the extended family, such as siblings separated in care? When thinking about a child in care remember that there are people in their lives who miss them and care about them, which is why giving a family a chance to reunite is so important.
Foster Care Supports Families
There are many misguided ideas about foster care, one being that foster care is a punishment. No-it’s-not! Foster care is a support system helping families when they aren’t able to provide a safe environment for their children. It’s important that we keep in mind that foster care gives people a chance to acquire the skills and resources to support their children.
Continue to Support Children and Their Families
All families need and deserve support. We ask that everyone to have an open mind and open heart and offer kindness before judgement, because we are all needed by the children in care. If you want to help these children, will you consider becoming a foster parent? If you’re in the Dallas and Fort Worth area, we want to hear from you. Contact Kids First today.