By Rachna Singh
New Democrat MLA for Surrey-Green Timbers
VICTORIA – October is Foster Family Month. This annual proclamation is meant to celebrate, honour and raise awareness about the urgent need to recruit more foster families in B.C. It’s also a way to acknowledge and thank foster families for the dedicated work they do in caring for some of the province’s most vulnerable children and youth. These caregivers’ willingness to step up has changed kids’ lives for the better.
As of August 2018, there were about 4,500 children and youth in foster care, roughly 67 percent of whom are Indigenous. Across B.C., these young people are cared for in about 2,600 family-based foster homes. Many of the caregivers are caring for more than one foster child. Some foster caregivers have been caring for children for years and have fostered as many as, if not more than, 150 foster kids over a period of decades.
Many of those experienced families are reaching retirement age. It’s why there’s always need for new caregivers to be there for kids who, for a variety of reasons, can’t live with their own families. If you or someone you know is interested in becoming a foster care giver, please visit fosternow.ca to get started today.
I would like to say, thank you again to all B.C. foster families. Your work is incredibly challenging and rewarding, and you are some of the invisible heroes of our society.