Great Need for Iowa Foster Families - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Great Need for Iowa Foster Families

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CEDAR RAPIDS (KWWL)

Despite the hundreds of African American kids in foster care in Iowa, there are fewer than 100 African American families willing to be foster parents in our state.

Says LaSharon Duckett of IowaKidsNet, "Alot of African American families aren't involved in the system, because it's not been very kind to them in the first place."

That's why, this Memorial Day weekend, IowaKidsNet www.iowakidsnet.org sponsored a foster care awareness event, called 'Get Lifted.' It was an informative and entertaining program at the African American museum of Iowa in Cedar Rapids

LaSharon adds, "At IowaKidsNet, we don't stipulate that you necessarily have to be African American to foster African American children. But, when there are children who prefer to be in an African American home, we try to fill that need as best we can."

That's quite a challenge, with an estimated one in three African American children in the Iowa foster care system in some way and so few African American foster families.

"What it's going to take is for a lot of community members who are involved in the system to say--'Hey, there is a way you can work with the system and it can work for you.' And, in the past, it really hasn't worked for us. It's an immediate need. Its not something that's going to go away in five minutes or five months. It's going to take years to work on, but now is the time to lay the foundation," LaSharon Duckett says.

Many Iowa teenagers are also doing great work in helping other foster children understand their unusual situations. These teens are involved in the group 'Elevate' through Children's and Families of Iowa. http://www.cfiowa.org/.

Some of these teens are still in foster care, while others were there once and now help and inspire other teens who are still in the foster care system.

As always, for more information on adoption and foster care, please contact IowaKidsNet on the toll free number--1-800-243-0756 for more information on adoption and foster care.

Online Reporter:  Ron Steele 

rsteele@kwwl.com

 

 

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