Foster Hearts Updates October 2020
Foster Hearts is a non-profit organization partnering with our community in Whatcom, Skagit, Island and Snohomish Counties to improve the lives of children in foster care. Our goal is to widen horizons, teach important life skills and bring joy to the children in foster care and those who care for them. Foster Hearts’ programs exist for the purpose of easing the challenges of the foster care experience for children and caregivers.
Our organization helps reduce the financial strain sometimes put on caregiver families to meet the immediate needs of a new placement as well as provide opportunities for positive childhood experiences that are not met in full by the State or other programs. Our hope is by “filling in the gap” in these instances, caregiver funds will be freed up for use in other ways to help children adapt to and feel comfortable in their environments.
Here are some of the ways we can support foster children and caregivers:
- Foster Parent Exchange Groups: We have two groups that you can join as a caregiver to trade or sell or your items. We have a giveaway or two that will happen until the end of the year. So, if you have not joined please do, so you can post to win!
· Food for Fosters: With COVID-19 many of our foster homes are struggling to make ends meet. If you need help with food, please let us know as we may be able to assist. https://foster-hearts.com/contact-us/
· One Simple Wish: Does your foster child have a wish of some type? Maybe a new toy or a bike or a dance class? You can submit a wish through Foster Hearts, and we submit the wish for your foster child. Once the wish is granted (can take up to 6 weeks) it will be mailed directly to your home. To enter a wish: https://foster-hearts.com/one-simple-wish-request-form/
· Care Kits: Do you have a new foster child who came with nothing? You can request a Care Kit and it comes with new or like new clothing and hygiene products, diapers, and wipes if age appropriate. To apply- https://foster-hearts.com/programs/
- FUN: Foster Hearts funds a variety of athletic, educational, and social activities along with personal items for children in foster care that are not otherwise funded by the State or other programs. We still have free admission tickets to the Woodland Park Zoo. Just email email@example.com to have some sent to you by mail. https://foster-hearts.com/programs/
- Foster Closets: The Whatcom Foster Closet is merging with Foster Hearts and together we know we can do great things! Foster Hearts has secured a location in Skagit County and will be opening another Foster Closet for our Skagit homes. For times and info https://foster-hearts.com/our-partners/ Just a reminder for all the Snohomish Caregivers you have a wonderful clothing closet in your area The Treasure Chest. For more info or to visit you can call or text LaVonne at 425-350-5368.
- Liaison Services: Foster Hearts offers liaison services for a small yearly fee of $25.00 (tax deductible). You will be assigned a liaison to work with as your personal liaison and mentor for the year. This service is for kinship caregivers, licensed caregivers, and those in the licensing process to enhance connections between caregivers and Department of Children Youth & Families and the Licensing Division. Support services to include:
Licensing Assistance (First time or Renewal)
Paperwork Completion Assistance (Licensing, RGAP, Adoption Support)
Guidance for monthly reimbursement & mileage payments
Support at DCYF Meetings (FTDM, SPM, etc.)
CPS/Licensing Investigation Support
General Kinship/Licensed Caregiver Information & Support
Indian Child Welfare Case Support (ICWA)
To apply for the Liaison Services Program: https://foster-hearts.com/caretiver-support/
- Donations – Do you or someone you know love to sew or knit items for kids? Do you know a group or organization that would do a drive for diapers, needed items or holiday toys? Would you or someone you know like to fulfill a need on our Amazon Wish List? If so, please go to our website and make a purchase or let us know about your volunteer item or idea at : https://foster-hearts.com/how-you-can-help/
The time has come for the Treehouse Holiday Magic. If you have already received an email from Treehouse to pick out a gift for your foster child, you are good to go. If you have not received an email, then please go to their website to enroll your child for a holiday gift. Registration closes Oct. 31st. Enroll here: https://www.treehouseforkids.org/gift-selection-request
If you have any needs, please reach out. We know things are challenging on so many levels when caring for a child in foster care and it is our desire to assist. Our passion is to work with our community to bring resources and supports to children in foster care and their caregivers.