November is national adoption month and there is an urgent need for families to provide safe, temporary homes for teens in Iowa’s foster care system.
According to Lutheran Services in Iowa, 55 children in western Iowa between ages 10 and 18 are currently waiting for a foster family. Due to the shortage of families, they are forced to stay in shelters.
“Hundreds of western Iowa children are referred into foster care each year, and loving foster families are not always immediately available for them,” says Dawn Luetje, Project Manager for LSI Foster Care and Adoption. “Right now, we have a critical need for families who can open their hearts and homes to older children and teens.”
The majority of children in foster care have experienced neglect, abuse, or trauma. The ultimate goal of foster care is reunification with the child’s birth family.
A foster family provides care in a temporary supportive home until the child can return to their birth family or find a new permanent home through adoption.
Lutheran Services in Iowa stresses that there is no “typical” foster family. They can be single, married, and in homes with or without biological children. They can be employed or stay-at-home parents, homeowners, renters, and pet owners.
Foster parents are individuals of all ethnicities, all sexual orientations, and all walks of life.
“If you’ve ever considered becoming a foster parent, now is the time,” Luetje says. “Iowa children need you.”
If you would like to learn more about LSI Foster Care and Adoption, please contact Julie Erickson at 515-271-7328 or at Julie.Erickson@LSIowa.org.