WACO, Texas (KWTX) – When the pandemic started, the need for foster families across Texas did not stop, but the state needed to find a new way to host information meetings.
The Department of Family and Protective Services moved the informational meetings for potential foster families online, and in the last year, there has been a 36% increase in meeting participation.
Sherry Harris, a foster and and adoptive home development specialist for CPS, said with the virtual meetings, people don’t have to travel.
They’re able to attend the meetings from their home, or wherever they’d like to be Harris said in the Waco area — it went from around 20 people signing up for information sessions to more than 50 people signing up.
Harris said it’s important to have foster families available, especially from different areas. She said children don’t ask to be taken from their homes, and it’s often a traumatic experience.
“If they’re able to stay in the same community, attend the same school, be around the same friends, be able to participate in the same activities, then this reduces the trauma on that child,” Harris said.
In addition to the number of people participating increasing, Harris said the people are also engaging more in the meetings than when they were held at offices. Those people also seem to be more willing to adopt and foster children.
“With these virtual meetings, people are saying that okay, I can make a difference in a child’s life,” Harris said. “I can be there for them and I can see them through these different situations.”
There are several meetings throughout the month of February, including one at 12 p.m. on Tuesday, Feb. 9. If you’re interested in attending, you can sign up at adoptchildren.org under the information meetings tab.
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