The foster care system touches the lives of more than 7,000 children in South Carolina annually. Right now, there are more than 4,600 children from our communities in foster care. Recent Federal mandates have prevented state agencies from placing children under 12 in group care. We do not have enough foster homes to accommodate the ever-increasing number of children coming through our child welfare system.
The intent of foster care is to temporarily protect children in a healthy and stable environment when children cannot remain safely in their family home. The goal of foster care is reunification with the birth family.
It is estimated we need 1,500 foster homes in South Carolina to provide for our children.
Fire families, law enforcement families, EMS and dispatcher families are a natural fit when it comes to fostering our most vulnerable children.
Why are First Responders a Good Fit?
First responder families are compassionate people who have been called to help and give back to their communities. We need families who love their communities and strive to make those communities a safe place. We want our foster children to be able to remain in their own schools and their own churches; to maintain connections with their friends. Due to the current lack of foster homes, children are sometimes being sent several counties away, often being separated from their siblings.
First responders are the picture of safety to our children. The children we work with have never felt safe. We need families who can ease the fears of our children.
We talk about the Brotherhood within our fire departments. That brotherhood exists because of the trust and the firefighters’ need to depend on each other. Children in foster care often have problems forming relationships due to mistrust in their biological families. We need good, positive, trustworthy role models for the children in our care.
Children in foster care have experienced trauma. Just coming into foster care is a traumatic event. Being separated from their parents; their siblings; their pets is traumatic. These children often come from abusive or neglectful homes. When they come into foster care, they lose everything. Sometimes, our first responders are even present as these children are being removed from their families. We need foster families who can understand and manage the trauma our children have experienced. Due to the nature of the job, first responder families understand what trauma is and the effects it can have. Families like yours can help heal these children.
The lack of foster homes doesn’t just affect a few of the kids in our state. It affects all of us.
Connie Maxwell Children’s Home is committed to licensing Christian foster home environments for the placement of foster children in South Carolina. Connie Maxwell will accomplish this in accordance with the statues out lined in the South Carolina Children’s Code and the Policy and Procedure of the South Carolina Department of Social Services. We are available to license homes in any county in South Carolina.