FOSTER PALM BEACH
Help local Foster Kids!! Join us for Networking To Help Children benefiting Speak Up for Kids Palm Beach County with special guest bartenders Tiffany Copeland, Adrienne Gang, and Ross Inia from "Below Deck". Guaranteed to be a fun night with this Crew On Deck!!
A HUGE thank you to Bolay and especially their Wellington location for donating food for our volunteer child advocates to enjoy during the holiday wrapping event where over 50 community partners have donated toys, bikes, gift cards and clothes for the over 1700 foster children here in Palm Beach County. Here’s a quote from Bolay “This time of year is all about giving and we are honored to be a part of your incredible efforts with Speak Up For Kids”.
Earlier this year we were hanging out with Bolay's West Palm Beach Crew for National Adoption Month.
Thanks @Bolay Community for caring about our local foster kids!!
After raising her biological children, Dorothy felt the pangs of loneliness and decided to fill her home by fostering children. Almost 50 kids and 26 years later, she's found great joy helping to "bridge" families back together and even becoming a Forever Family for two little ones, including Gabby who co-stars in this video.
We asked Dorothy for one piece of advice for those considering fostering... she said "Try" - you don't have to be perfect, you just have to care and it will change both their life and your life forever.
Where to donate gifts for Foster Kids this holiday season?
Speak Up For Kids holiday drive ensures local children receive gifts for the holiday. Various locations drop-off locations throughout the county. Needed are new/unwrapped toys, clothes, sports equipment, etc. plus Gift Cards for our teens.There are 1700+ children under DCF supervision and 1200 Palm Beach County kids living in an "out-of-home" situation so the need for gifts is high. Ages of children "in care" vary but about 600 of the kids in out-of-home care are ages 0-5, 300 ages 6-12, and 300 13-18.
Keep us in mind too after the holidays, gifts and gifts cards are needed for birthdays - it's such an important event for kids to celebrate and many have never enjoyed a birthday celebration EVER.
Donation Dropoff Locations to date:
*Foster Palm Beach is a program of Speak Up For Kids, and any support should be made directly to them https://speakupforkidspbc.org/.
Holiday Gift Drive for Foster Children
Heavenly Father, the birth of your Son Jesus Christ brought great joy to Mary and Joseph. We thank you for every child whose birth brought great joy into the world. So, we pray that these orphans will bring great joy to the family that will take them in.
Heavenly Father, our prayer is that they grow up healthy in body and strong in spirit, through the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Heavenly Father, we pray for the orphans that they may grow up in families, that as they begin to discover something of themselves and of your world, their gifts and talents may be used creatively, their decisions may be based on what is good and of real worth, and their lives may be directed in the paths you have planned.
Heavenly Father, we pray for their spiritual development, that they may grow up in the fear of God, in the faith of Christ, and in the fellowship of the Church, to love and serve you all their days.
Heavenly Father, grant to our orphan children this gift above all, that as they grow in years, they may grow also in the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ; so that when the time comes, they may go out into the life of the world strong in the faith of the Lord their God.
Grant these blessings in the Name of Your Son our Savior Jesus Christ. Amen
"The first step to becoming a foster parent in Palm Beach County is to attend a one-hour information session at one of the eight licensing providers here in Palm Beach County," says Diana of Speak Up For Kids during a recent interview at WPBF 25 with Mark Kelly. "In fact, you can sign up right now while we're chatting!" [Weekly information sessions/orientations are listed on the www.FosterPalmBeach.org/events page]. At the orientation, you'll learn the requirements to foster children such as background checks, training, and home studies plus you'll find out the various benefits the children receive such as Medicaid, ELC Vouchers, a monthly stipend along with community resources available to you throughout the county. "To succeed, you need community support and many nonprofits and resources are available in Palm Beach County." "These information sessions are designed to provide more detail and then you're ready, you then take the next step." Hear the full interview here: www.wpbf.com/article/foster-palm-beach/29413629
The lead Child Based Care (CBC) agency here in Palm Beach County is ChildNet who subcontracts the licensing and management of homes to various providers.
Speak Up For Kids is the nonprofit support to the Guardian ad Litem Program and recognizing the need more caring foster homes and the need for a centralized point for information on becoming a foster parent, Speak Up For Kids created and is devoted to finding caring homes for abused, abandoned, & neglected children in Palm Beach County through their #FosterPalmBeach Program.
Other ways to help include Guardian ad Litem Volunteer Child Advocates who spend 10-15 hours a month advocating for a child. Volunteer time as a Guardian ad Litem is fairly flexible - volunteers see the kids at least once every thirty days wherever they are placed, and the other work is often done via phone or email. Volunteers appear in court at least twice a year and file monthly status update reports.
Donations to Speak Up For Kids help to fund these programs as well as normalcy items for the children themselves such as birthday cakes/gifts, voice lessons, karate, basketball camps, Girl Scouts, etc. Make a 110% IMPACT! Honda Cares will add a 10% matching bonus to every donation now through February 26, 2020.
Forever Families (adoption) are needed for the children whose parents are not able to correct the issues bringing the children "into care" and Mentors are needed to give the children experiences and support the future development into productive and stable young adults.
To foster in Palm Beach County, visit our "Upcoming Events" page to sign up for an information sessions. Links for advocating, donating, adopting, or mentoring can be found on the "Other Ways To Help Page".
You may also call 561-223-9646 for a one-on-one conversation.
It's long been said that if every church took care of one foster child or orphan, there would be more resources than need, commonly known as One Church, One Child.
At Foster Palm Beach, we partner with local faith-based organization to make it easy to help find foster parents, guardian ad litem volunteer child advocates, mentors, and other support. We call this Faith-Based Advocacy and our community partner PBC Unites provides tools for churches, synagogues, and more to easily get involved in foster care initiatives. Flyers, bulletin inserts, bookmarks, and speakers are all available for free!
November is National Adoption Month and internationally a celebration is held annualy called Orphan Sunday. To quote CAFO.org (Christian Alliance For Orphans): "As Christians respond to God’s call to care for the orphan, lives are transformed. Orphan Sunday varies as much as the people and churches involved. You can participate through sermons and Sunday school classes, prayer gatherings, and simple meals, fundraisers and live concerts."
Visit https://www.pbcunites.org/faith-based-advocacy.html for resources for your foster care ministry.
We remember Tina from the stories her GAL used to share about her journey through foster care to the wonderful young woman she has become today. Tina was adopted through foster care and now has a forever family. Thanks to CBS12's Liz Quirantes, WPEC, for sharing her story: https://cbs12.com/f…/forever-family/forever-family-meet-tina.
Guardian ad Litem volunteer child advocates like Lynne Brown and Tess (her missed and beloved puppy) stand by our kids and provide a voice for them in court. Teaching them to be brave and advocate for what's best.
Want to help? Attend an adoption orientation at CHS (see events page) or visit www.GALPBC.org for information on how to become a GAL.
Thanks to CBS12 & Liz Quirantes for showing the many ways to help Palm Beach County Foster Children.
Each week CBS12 highlights a child who is looking for a Forever Family, an adoptive family. Beyond those children needing forever families, Liz and CBS12 raise awareness about the need for foster families, volunteer child advocates, and mentors.
You can volunteer as an advocate to help children navigate the foster system being their voice is a very entangled court system. Imagine being a 9-year old who attends a court hearing about the decisions made for his/her placement and general well-being; how scary would that be!
As a Guardian ad Litem Volunteer Child Advocate, you'll visit your assigned child(ren) at least once every 30 days, you'll have access to court documents, educational, medical, and therapeutic records. You'll get to know the various parties in the case and then make a best interest recommendation regarding the child, addressing all of their needs.
It sounds like a lot but it's easily doable in 10-15 hours a month. Much of the volunteer work can be done in the evenings or weekends, and it's often phone work, so even busy people can find time to help.
To take the next step, call the GAL office at 561-355-6224 or visit www.GALPBC.org. You'll complete an interview, attend training, go through a thorough background check, and once certified, you'll be on your way to helping a child succeed.
Foster Palm Beach's Centralized Foster Home Recruiter is a program of Speak Up For Kids of Palm Beach County created through a Children's Service Council Great Ideas Initiative grant to address the critical need for foster parents in Palm Beach County.
Speak Up For Kids is committed to providing every vulnerable child in Palm Beach County with a voice to advocate for their physical, educational and emotional best interests. Any financial support should be made directly through: www.SpeakUpForKidsPBC.org