May 3, 2017 : The Board of El Paso County Commissioners at its regular meeting Tuesday, May 2, recognized May 2017 as National Foster Care Month, and thanked foster families for opening their hearts and homes to children in need.
“All children deserve and benefit from enduring, positive relationships with caring adults, especially when their own families are in crisis and unable to provide for their essential well-being,” said Commissioner Longinos Gonzalez, Jr., as he read the Proclamation into the record. “The immeasurable and ongoing gifts of time and caring given by foster families in El Paso County are greatly appreciated and deserve public thanks.”
On any given day, 675 children on average are living in foster care and kinship care in El Paso County.
“Children in foster care require secure, stable places to call home until they can either safely reunite with their parents or establish other lifelong family relationships,” said Julie Krow, executive director of DHS. “I want to thank El Paso County staff for all the great work they do to keep children safe. Foster families bring in children at all hours of the night, in all kinds of circumstances. They deserve our greatest respect.”
The Department of Human Services works in partnership with a local Child Placement Agency (CPA) network, involved families and extended families, schools, faith and civic organizations, law enforcement and the judiciary toward the goal of positively affecting the lives of children in foster care. DHS case workers also work closely with foster families. Leadership and families from Maple Star, ChinsUp, Hope and Home, Kids Crossing, Special Kids Special Families and Savio attended the meeting on Tuesday.
“There are so many agencies doing amazing work,” said Olive McRae, foster parent. “There are so many foster parents doing amazing work.”
Patty Svendsen and her husband have been foster parents for 30 years. In that time, they have fostered 153 children. “Life is sometimes really tough with these kids,” she said. “It has been a blessing in our life. We love what we are doing.”
May is National Foster Care Month and serves as a platform to connect vulnerable children with concerned citizens who, as foster parents, mentors, and advocates, will help them to thrive on their way to adulthood.
“Thank you to the County staff and the service providers,” said Commissioner Stan VanderWerf. “To the parents, just wow! Children are gifts and I want to thank all of you who take care of those gifts.”
“I’m in such awe of what you’ve done. It’s nice to be able to highlight the good work that is done every day in our County,” said Commissioner Darryl Glenn, Board president. “Your stories touch my heart, and I thank you for all that you do.”
Article provided by: Kristina Iodice
DHS Public Information Officer
Phone: 444-5533 Cell: 235-8478