The benefits of fostering or adopting a child

Published 7:00 am Wednesday, May 16, 2018

The thought of fostering or adopting a child can be daunting for some. It is often difficult to determine how a child will behave, what specific needs they may have, or how they will react to a new living situation. However, taking that risk and providing a warm, loving environment to a child who has nowhere else to go is one of the noblest and most rewarding things a person can do.

According to a report by the U.S. Administration for Children and Families, in 2016 there were more than 400,000 children across the nation in foster care and more than 100,000 children were waiting to be adopted.

Children who move in and out of the foster and adoption systems are often emotionally and psychologically scarred.

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More often than not, the reason they were taken away from their birth families is due to some sort of neglect or abuse. As a result, children need to have something to fall back on. They need loving, caring individuals and families to step up and give them the love they need.

An article by the Adoption Exchange Association’s “Adopt U.S. Kids” states that children who are unable to find caring homes and “age out” of the system often face hardships later in life.

“Each year, approximately 20,000 youth will age out of the foster care system when they turn 18 or 21, or when they finish high school (depending upon the state in which they live.) These children are at increased risk of poor educational outcomes, experiencing homelessness and being unemployed,” the article states.

Children placed in state programs are done so at no fault of their own, but rather have to find new homes to get away from a negative home environment.

Stepping up to adopt or foster a child may seem intimidating, but with a little love, a child’s life could be changed for the better.