Embrace Oregon is a movement asking the key question, “What would it look like if we as a community lived into embracing the most vulnerable children among us?”
And it’s no mystery where the most vulnerable children in our community go – through the doors of a Department of Human Services (DHS) Child Welfare office.
My husband, Luke, and I have been foster parent’s for 11 years and have 4 children, ages 9 and under, two of them we fostered before adopting them.
When I was asked a few weeks ago to write a blog for people interested in finding more information about foster care I was a little nervous. I am the first to admit that foster care, though I am an advocate of it, is an issue relatively new to me. I have friends and family who have adopted both domestically and internationally but I know few people who have been foster parents. So, I wasn’t sure where to start to provide you, the reader, with some valuable information.
I figured since my experience was limited I would ask others who have been working in this area to share their thoughts, resources and suggestions. I have gathered the very helpful information below. If you are interested in learning more about foster care or getting connected with a helpful organization the following resources should get you started on your path.
When I was a new foster parent a few years ago, I was introduced to an analogy that has changed the way I think about vulnerable children. The analogy is simple: Children are like duct tape. It’s a lesson that has taken me through seven years of parenting children who have been hurt, and five of those years as an adoptive parent.
I’m sure you are familiar with duct tape—the shiny, multi-purpose tape that people keep on hand for odd jobs.
Duct tape is a serious tool. It’s not for gift wrapping or arts and crafts. When you’re using duct tape, it’s not for temporary purposes. Once it’s on, it’s there to stay. That’s because duct tape was made to do one thing: to stick.
As we write on the topic of foster care, I’ve been doing some research to understand the issue better. The results have been shocking.
In 2012, there were approximately 400,000 children in the foster care system in the U.S. In that same year, almost 23,500 children were ‘aged out’ of the system. That’s 23,500 children who are going out into the world with possibly no support system—50% will never graduate high school and up to 45% will be homeless at some point. In Illinois 80% of the prison population spent at least some time in the foster care system growing up. 
This is a re-post of a blog written by our friends over at Daddy's Tractor. You can read the original post here.
I’ve gotten a lot of questions recently: lots of funny looks and tiny head shakes. Its not something I write about on the blog, but since there’s interest, I’ll answer. People don’t get why I’ve opened up my home to a foster child.
I understand that. I really do. And maybe I can explain it to you and maybe I can’t. I went through a process to get here myself. Basically it boils down to this.
Love is always worth it.
One of the greatest joys of my life is a boy called Binh. Binh entered my life seven years ago in the midst of complete chaos. I was running two programs with over 700 churches involved, writing training materials day and night and was utterly exhausted. Binh first turned up as a prayer request one Sunday morning. I remember listening as the person shared that she had been trying to help a drug addict living on the streets who was pregnant. The girl had just gone into labor, two months premature. I looked around at all the stay-at-home moms and thought, “Someone should do something! That baby is God’s precious creation and he’s going to die.”