When Adoption Goes Wrong: Foster Care
As a student with a social work mindset, when I think of foster care adoption I think of uniting families in spite of difficult circumstances, placing children into families that care for them, and connecting children with families that will love and care for them. As I read through articles and stories online about foster care adoptions gone wrong I was shocked to find as many true stories as I did. One of the shocking results I found was this: as of 2011, there were 500,000 children in the United States that were still waiting to get accepted into a home.
One of the main problems that can occur through foster care adoption is the relocation of a child. When a child is put into a foster care home, this child may be moved to another city, another state or clear across the country. This creates a difficult environment for making and keeping friends and doesn’t allow for the normalcy and routine that children of a young age need. According to Childtrends.org, children in foster care homes are at a 2 times higher risk for performing poorly in school than non-foster home children. Another source indicates that about 70 % of foster care children experience MORE than seven school changes between Kindergarten and 12th grade.
Another major concern creating issues for foster care adoption is new budget cuts that are being instated in the US. In Texas, in particular, The Department of Family and Protective Services is experiencing severe cuts to budgets. This deficit affects hundreds of children who may not be placed into loving homes but into agency offices and back into the system. President Obama has identified how important it is to provide support to these children and has indicated part of his budget as monies that will go to foster care and adoptive services.
President Obama deemed November as national adoption month to help raise the awareness about foster care, and the importance of foster and adoptive parents all over the country. While November has long since passed, let’s still continue to remember those children who in the foster care system waiting… just waiting to be adopted into a stable, consistent and loving family.
Leslie is from Fort Wayne, IN. In addition to student jobs on campus, Leslie is a full time student. She will be a college graduate this spring with a BS in both Social Work and Psychology. Five of her favorite things are coffee, worship music, camp, sunshine, and the color purple, and she is very passionate about people, relationship-building, and children.