<ul><li>Fostering Hope Florida’s mission is to provide healthy nurturing, community-supported foster homes, complete with client-specific services for children who are unable to reside with their own families. </li></ul><ul><li>We call this our Hope House </li></ul>Foster Care at its Best!
There are reports of 10,000 abused and/or neglected children in Pinellas County every year. Did You Know? A statewide count of children in foster care in 2004 reported 48,282 children in foster care. National average = 10 in 1,000 children Florida = 12 in 1,000 children in care 4,100 children over the age of eight are available for adoption.
In Circuit 6 (Pinellas and Pasco counties) there are more than 2,000 children in foster care. Circuit 6 In June 2007, it was reported that there were 1,755 children in the Pinellas foster care system with only 461 beds available in licensed foster homes. That is only 26 percent of the beds needed!
<ul><li>Sixty-six percent are under the age of 10, spending their critical early development years in an institutionalized setting. </li></ul><ul><li>Many children remain in foster care for three years or more. </li></ul>Did You Know? Typically, children end up living in foster care when child welfare agencies remove them from the birth families because of abuse or neglect.
Nationwide, more than 700,000 children pass through foster care at some point in any given year. We must remember that children entering foster care already have lives full of trauma – they don’t need to receive it while in foster care, too.
Children in foster care have disproportionately high rates of physical, developmental and mental health problems and often have many unmet medical and mental health care needs. -American Academy of Pediatrics
Due to foster home shortages, children often end up living in a series of foster homes, or group homes, before they “age out” of the foster care system. Many go to a different home each night, carrying their belongings in a grocery bag. Siblings are often separated from one another indefinitely. The foster home shortage plays a large role in this unfortunate fact.
<ul><li>Children in foster care have more compromised developmental outcomes. </li></ul>By the time they leave foster care, many of these children are behind in their education because of repeatedly moving from homes and schools.
A frightening statistic! <ul><li>According to a 2007 study by the University of Chicago, 55 percent of 21 year olds who aged out of the foster care system had been arrested at least once between the ages of 18 and 21. </li></ul>Compare that with 8 percent of the general population in that age group.
We want to break the cycle! These unsettling facts and figures are the reason we believe that our Hope House is a solution to fixing the broken foster care system. With love and stability, foster children can receive the same care that every child needs and deserves to grow to become productive healthy adults.
Fostering Hope Florida A sensible approach to foster care!