National Foster Care Month takes place every May, and it is a way to spread the word about the realities faced by children and youth in foster care.
Here are some statistics:
-In the United States, more than 400,000 children and youth live in foster care (1).
-In 2011, about half of these youth lived in a foster home without relatives (2).
-About 30,000 older foster youth leave the foster care system each year without finding a forever family (1).
-Of the children in foster care in 2009, more than 114,000 were waiting to be adopted, but only 57,466 children were adopted that year (3).
-About half wanted to be reunited with parents or primary caretakers.
-In 2010, more than 240,000 children were served by Court Appointed Special Advocates and Guardian Ad Litem volunteers. These volunteers are assigned to the most difficult cases where abuse and neglect were involved (3).
-Approximately 245,260 children left foster care in 2011. Thirteen months is the median amount of time these youth spent in care (4).
- Of these youth:
- 52 percent were reunited with parents or primary caretakers
- 20 percent were adopted
- 11 percent were emancipated
- 8 percent moved in with a family member
- 6 percent moved in with a guardian
- 3 percent had different outcomes
You can make a difference. Here’s how:
-Become a Court Appointed Special Advocate. CASAs advocate in court for children in foster care who have been neglected and abused, and they help ensure that they are placed in a safe, permanent home as quickly as possible.
-Help CASA raise community awareness and recruit volunteers.
-Spread the word!
- Share this blog post or any of these statistics on your social media accounts or via e-mail.
- Talk about it at work or with family and friends.
- Participate in events in your area that support the cause.
- Make a financial contribution.
- Keep the conversation going throughout the year.
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