The magnitude of foster care as an issue in America is startling. With an estimated 12 million foster care alumni and over 400,000 children and youth currently in out-of-home care, it is hard to ignore the impact of child abuse and neglect on our nation’s next generation.
Consider these startling facts:
- Native American children are about three times more likely to be placed in foster care than all children nationally.
- Native American children tend to stay in foster care longer and move more frequently (placement to placement) when compared to other children.
We have had great success finding relatives to care for youth in need, but our goal is to increase the number of Tribal foster homes available to serve youth who may not have a relative they can stay with is need be. Tribal children in foster care not only miss the opportunity to be raised by their birth parents but often also miss the opportunity to be influenced by their extended Tribal families, aunties, uncles, grandparents, and great-grandparents. Often, these children do not learn family and Tribal traditions, history and values.
Some facts about becoming a foster parent include:
- You can be single, married, or domestic partners.
- You can live in a house or apartment and must a sleeping area for the child.
- You must be age 21 or older and have access to transportation.
- You must have sufficient income to support your family.
- You must be able to physically care for your child.
- You must pass a child abuse and criminal background check.
For information about becoming a foster parent for a Native child in your community,
please call Gena Grizzard (707) 487-9255 x 3133 or Paulie Boynton (707) 487-9255 x 3130
Smith River Rancheria – Community and Family Services Department
Thanks to all our Relative & Tribal Foster Families!! You are making a difference!