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Forever Family Friday week 22 – Angelo

Do I need to be married? Do I need to own my own home? Do I need to complete a certain level of education? Do I need to be a certain age, or have a certain income level? These are questions we hear over and over and the answers are: no, no, no and no! What DO you need? You just simply need to LOVE. You need to have an open heart and an open home. You need to be willing to take a little time and seek support for a specific need that your child might have. You need to be willing to parent. You need to fight for your child. This is about the care of a human being that will look to you for love, guidance and direction. I’ll say it again (and again and again) every kid is one loving adult away from being a success story! The resources are abundant to answer most of your questions, and if you have more, DM me! DM our foundation (@MIHFoundation). I can’t promise we will have the answers but we can point you in the right direction.

Please meet Angelo. He needs love. He needs and open heart and an open home. He needs someone to champion for him and seek out the best for him. Can that be you? Can it be your neighbor or your relative? Angelo is sweet, lovable and 9 years old from Florida. He is content with quite time, playing on his tablet or reading a book, especially in a cozy corner in his room. He loves to play outside and has an interest in cars. Although Angelo is not able to communicate verbally, he does understand everything around him and is able to communicate in other ways. He is happy to express himself by pointing to specific things he wants and he can let his dislikes be known as well.

The perfect family for Angelo is one who is patient, nurturing and willing to take the necessary steps to learn how to meet his needs and advocate for him and care for him while celebrating his accomplishments along the way. Can that be you? Could your life be the one that gets to be blessed with his sweet self? For more information please contact @HeartGalleryTPA 813-314-2021Kismis Ink Photography

#adoption

#ForeverFamilyFriday

#fostercare

#love

#MakeADifference

#NoUnwantedKids

#JustUnfoundFamlies

#AdoptionRocks

#FamiliesDontHaveToMatch

Forever Family Friday week 21 – Tayiana

UPDATE! Tay has been matched with her forever family!

We are already half way through March, I am trying to wrap my head around that! I feel like I was just vacuuming the confetti off the floor from New Year’s Eve and now I’m pulling out my Easter bunnies. It is a reminder that time stops for no one. That is why when you are a teenager in foster care you feel a deeper sense of urgency to find your forever family, you feel the minimal security you do have slipping away. A mild panic hits many of them. Will they ever be a part of a family? Will they have Christmases and birthdays with people who care about them the rest of their lives? In the majority of states the day you turn 18 you are forced to leave your foster home. You go to sleep one night in a bed in the safety of a foster family, and the next day you’re expected to figure it out on your own. Some literally get kicked to the curb. Which results in this next statistic – 1 in 5 foster kids who age out of the system are homeless. Please continue to journey with us to stop this craziness!

Please meet Tayiana! She is 14 years old and from Georgia. She describes a family as loving, caring and understanding. Family is support. “Tay” enjoys watching TV and she enjoys cooking! She can make pasta for dinner and french fries are her favorite! Something that interests her is watching people do their makeup. One day she would like to be a makeup artist and describes it like a canvas on your face. Or a hairstylist! At school, where she earns good grades and gets along well with the other kids, Tayiana enjoys learning about math and bonding with her friends.

Tayiana is a determined person and can be focused at times. When she wants something she goes for it! I like that! With her forever family she would like to go on summer vacations, travel and spend quality family time. We all deserve our place to belong… our home… our family. We all deserve people support us and love and care for us. Can you be that family for Tayiana? For more information please email Rebecca at [email protected]
https://americaskidsbelong.org/project/tayiana/

#adoption

#ForeverFamilyFriday

#fostercare

#love

#MakeADifference

#NoUnwantedKids

#JustUnfoundFamlies

#AdoptionRocks

#FamiliesDontHaveToMatch

Forever Family Friday week 20 – Gavan

Let’s talk about the process. This is week 20 of #ForeverFamilyFriday and each week we share statistics, info and stories. We share resources and websites. But what do you actually do with that info? It is my hope that you dig in. That you want to learn more. That you call, email, click. That you share and repost. That you tag people who may be a suitable family. That you talk about these children at the dinner table. Perhaps even with your own children.

When inquiring about a child, they will want to know if your home study is completed, and if you are currently licensed to foster/adopt in the state where you live. Each state is different so we cannot give you a simple one step answer, unfortunately. Your local agencies will be the best place to start. Click the link in my bio for a starting point and more resources at LeighAnneTuohy.com.

Please meet Gavan! He is 15 years old and from Mississippi. This sports-loving young man is looking for a forever family. Children should NOT be looking for their family. Their family should be looking for THEM! This breaks my heart! Gavan describes himself as active and nice. He says he does well in math and enjoys playing games and playing sports. One day he would like to be a professional football player. He would like a family who treats him well and has children around his age. He thinks life with a family would help him deal more positively with life’s challenges. Don’t we all need people closest to us to deal with life’s challenges? This past year has taught me that for sure! Please contact [email protected] or call 601-359-4133. Photography: Charlie Lum Photography

#adoption

#ForeverFamilyFriday

#fostercare

#love

#MakeADifference

#NoUnwantedKids

#JustUnfoundFamlies

#AdoptionRocks

#FamiliesDontHaveToMatch

Forever Family Friday week 19 – Kasumy

If you are a teacher, a youth leader, or a parent of young children, you know this is Read Across America week. Schools and classrooms are celebrating their favorite books and book characters while encouraging the love for reading. There are book fairs and book contests. Such a fun week! I remember it so well…My dad would let my brother and me each buy a new book. It was awesome. But…there’s always a but…what you may not know, is that children in foster care preform lower in reading proficiency than their peers. Actually, nearly half of all foster children are considered below average in reading levels. HALF! On our journey we encounter this on a regular basis. Listen guys…foster children are just trying to survive. They are just trying to get through the day. Making sure their homework is done or putting on a little extra time in on reading is usually not a priority. It is not at the top of their list, or the foster parent’s list. You just can’t imagine the kids we encounter that are 18 and older and read below a 3rd grade reading level. It’s heartbreaking. We need to get all 425,000 plus kids in a family so they can grow and thrive in not only reading but all areas! Please meet Kasumy. She is 12 years old and lives in Arizona.

Kasumy describes herself as quiet and happy, and as someone who is open to trying new things. She expresses her creativity by beading, painting and doing crafts. She appreciates being included in activities and will gladly help with gardening or cooking and loves to bake banana bread. Her favorite subjects are P.E., art and computer class and she would be thrilled if her new family could teach her Spanish. I love that ambition!

Parenting that is straight-forward with strong rules and redirection will be best for Kasumy. She thrives when she receives attention, so her team is looking for a family with no other children or a family with children who are much older than her. Can you be that family for her? Can you teach her Spanish? Can you help her love to read? If you are interested please contact Heather at [email protected]

#adoption

#ForeverFamilyFriday

#fostercare

#love

#MakeADifference

#NoUnwantedKids

#JustUnfoundFamlies

#AdoptionRocks

#ReadAcrossAmerica

Forever Family Friday week 18 – Jarkies and Marquel

We are not put on this earth for ourselves but are placed here for each other! That statement rings especially true when we think about our siblings. Over 50% of children in foster care have one or more siblings in the system as well. That means statistically 9 of the 18 children we have posted to date has a brother or sister we do not even know about. Super sad! Typically a sibling group is first placed in temporary care. After a few days of being unsettled they are moved again to a long-term placement location. It’s a lot for me to process …much less the kids trying to process it! Sometimes foster parents find it too taxing to take several children so they elect to pick just one. And so the journey begins of siblings being ripped apart. More times than not these siblings have been each other’s security blanket and support system. The only little piece of familiarity and comfort that they know abruptly comes to an end. The siblings are now sad and confused, as to why they can’t be together. And we can’t understand why they are upset. I totally understand! I understand why they lash out and display anything and everything from depression to aggressive behavior. This is a common scenario and one that I would love to not see happen here with these siblings. Please allow me to introduce you to two pretty amazing kids… Jarkies and Marquel! Two sweet brothers ages 10 and 7 from California. Please please help us keep them together!

Jarkies is happy and outgoing. He has a good relationship with peers and is well liked at school. He loves art and can spend a good amount of time just drawing what he envisions in his mind. He also enjoys writing, building with Legos and playing video games. In school he is doing well and his favorite subject is math. Marquel is playful and energetic. He loves to have fun and enjoys spending time with his friends. Swimming, riding his bike and playing video games are favorites. He also likes coloring, drawing and building with Legos. Like his brother, he likes to keep his room tidy. These guys deserve to not only have a family but they deserve to have each other! 

 For more info Please contact Yesenia Garcia at 213-257-7007, [email protected] Photo by I Belong Project

#adoption

#ForeverFamilyFriday

#fostercare

#love

#MakeADifference

#Siblings

#AdoptionRocks

#Brothers

Forever Family Friday week 17 – Gabriela

What a crazy weather week so many folks in this country have had! Many places have seen unprecedented low temperatures and record snow fall! Lordie I’m so tired of using that word. I thought we put “unprecedented” to bed in 2020 but I guess not. Hey…I’m sure the kids are elated to have snow days but for parents it can be challenging. For many kids when they come inside hot chocolate is waiting. A warm home. And dry clothes. However. What if you are a child in the foster care system? Many foster families do a great job of filling in the gaps, but not all. Many foster children are not sure what they will walk into when they get home. They cannot be assured of the hot chocolate, a warm home or dry clothes. We would love to give every child that experience. Every child we post is literally just a family away from being a success story. They just need someone to champion for them. Gabriela lives in Maryland, and I’m sure she’s endured snow days and all that goes with it. My wish is to give her that assurance. The love and warmth that comes from a forever family. Let’s find someone to champion for Gabriela!

Gabriela is 13, curious, funny, imaginative, and caring. She enjoys being social with others and can be extremely friendly and outgoing. She loves to travel. Gabriela also loves trying new types of food, getting her nails painted, creating stories, and anything involving hair and dolls. Gabriela needs a forever family who demonstrates awareness, is patient, and excited to celebrate her! For more info contact Margo at [email protected] 301.503.6741.

Let’s give her the opportunity for warmth on snow days and all the days of the year. Reminder if you’re looking for info on how to get started, check out our website under Forever Family Friday!

#adoption

#ForeverFamilyFriday

#fostercare

#love

#MakeADifference

#OpenHeartsOpenHomes

#AdoptionRocks

#SnowDays