Chatham County launched an initiative this month aimed at recruiting new foster families.
Over the past couple of years, Chatham County has placed 23 percent of kids either outside the county or with private agencies because there were not enough foster families inside the county. Siblings often are split up. Right now, only three foster homes in Chatham County are able to accept siblings.
“When a child is sent away from his or her home community or has to leave brothers or sisters, the child faces even greater instability in an already stressful situation. There is also a dire need for homes that can accept children 10 years or older,” said Jamie Bazemore, placement services supervisor for the county's social services department. “While the DSS ensures all children are safely placed, the sad truth is that Chatham County has a serious shortage of foster families able to provide these children with safe, loving homes so that they can flourish in their home community.”
The Campaign for Chatham's Children will share information about the benefits of foster parenting and what kind of support is available for caregivers and children in foster care. It also will create a "circle of support" around foster kids and their caregivers through partnerships with local businesses, individuals, community groups and churches.
The social services department is seeking feedback from the community about foster care in Chatham County. You can find the survey by clicking here or going to the social services department's Facebook page.
If you're interested in learning more about becoming a foster parent or how you, your church, business or group can help, contact Bazemore at firstname.lastname@example.org or 919-642-6985.