Important Phone Numbers & InformationMay 24th, 2010 at 5:00 pm by Patrece Dayton under Fostering Hope
The Wabash Valley is in DESPERATE need of foster families to give children a good home, strong support and lots of love!
If you are interested in learning more about becoming a foster parent, call either Debbie Bedow or Teresa Gray at 812-244-2037 or 812-448-8731. You can also contact Vigo County Department of Child Services (DCS) at 812-234-0100.
The initial training to become a foster parent takes 20 hours; offered daytime, nights or Saturdays according to the need of the current training group. Ten additional hours are required annually; 6 must be in a classroom setting; the others can be done by reading books, video training or online. Criminal history checks and fingerprinting for every adult member of the household seeking a license is also checked as well as financial information to assure the family is self supporting for fostering.
What financial help is available to foster parents? Medicaid is available for most children who are in care to take care of medical expenses/prescriptions. Then, per diem is $25/day to be spent on food, clothing, school fees, etc. An initial clothing allowance is given for each child, and after that, the foster parent must maintain clothing. There is small amounts of money available through CPS to cover special events such as: prom dresses, trips to prospective colleges, senior trips.
There are currently more than 450 children in the “system” right now. Drugs play a huge part in the majority of families involved with DCS (75%). High rates of unemployment and general poverty are also major factors. One in four children in Vigo County lives in poverty. Vigo County also has a 10% unemployment rate. When there is high stress in a family (unemployment, underemployment, lack of adequate housing, domestic violence) the chances for children being abused and neglected rises dramatically. But, it is not just poor kids being victimized! Drugs, alcohol and mental health issues contribute to the abuse and neglect of children across all socioeconomic levels.
If a child is rescued from a bad home by CPS, the ultimate goal is to put that child with a family member. But, in some cases, those family members are also a bad influence. That is when a foster family is the child’s only safe haven.
PLEASE, PLEASE think about being a foster family and help make a huge difference in our community!!
If you cannot devote the time and love for a child right now, there is still a way you can help! There is a small donations account with DCS where community members can donate money to help kids out for special events and expenses the foster cannot afford. Call the numbers at the top of this blog for that information as well!
Thank you from the bottom of my heart for considering the children in our area and for fostering hope!